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How To Open A Dispensary In New York

How Much Marijuana Can You Possess Right Now

1st NYC Medical Marijuana Dispensary Opens

Bill S854A makes several stipulations for cannabis possession by patients, recreational users, and businesses.

For patients, the possession limit is a maximum of 60-days worth of supply as determined by their prescribing caregiver. They may also possess a new 60-day supply set on the last 7 days before their current running 60-day supply is over.

For recreational users above twenty-one years of age, possession of 3 ounces of cannabis or 24 grams of concentrated cannabis is legal.

Prepare To Apply For A Cannabis Dispensary In New York Now Heres Why

Weve been hearing a lot of chat in the cannabis community about New Yorks Senate Bill S854A earlier this year. For this reason, we have a message for New York cannaprenuers

Just because New York has yet to release their former cannabis regulations for the state, doesnt mean that you cant get started on your application for a dispensary in New York.

In this article, well share the latest legislature in New York, as well as the actions we think you can start taking now to apply for a dispensary in New York so you can be ready when the time is right.

What Types Of Dispensary Licenses Are Available In New York

Thus far, cannabis business opportunities in New York have been minimal. As things stand today, New York only has 36 cannabis dispensaries for a population of 20 million residents. While these figures will undoubtedly change with the adult-use market, there is no doubt New York has ample room for expansion.

While we don’t know the exact parameters for the adult-use market, some good info is available through the OCM concerning what types of licenses will be issued.

  • Adult-Use Microbusiness Licenses in New York will be offered to certain applicants. New York will issue the licenses to vertically integrated cannabis businesses that operate under certain size limits.
  • Adult-Use Retail Dispensary Licenses will be the bulk of the recreational dispensary licenses issued in New York. It remains unclear how many of these retail licenses will be allotted.
  • Adult-Use On-Site Consumption Licenses are special retail sales licenses. With these licenses, dispensaries will have areas onsite dedicated to cannabis consumption.
  • Adult-Use Delivery Licenses will be issued to people who do not “have an interest in or own another adult-use license type.” As such, delivery businesses in New York will operate independently of dispensaries.
  • Registered Organization Adult-Use Cultivator, Processor, Distributor, Retail Dispensary Licenses are classic vertically-integrated cannabis business licenses. There appear to be specific regulations on the types of products the dispensaries can sell.
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    A Land Grab For A Piece Of New Yorks Marijuana Business

    Cannabis companies and brokers are rushing into what could be a $4.2 billion industry, but for all the excitement, there are significant challenges.

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    It has been only five weeks since New York State legalized the use of recreational marijuana. The board that will oversee the rollout has yet to be appointed, let alone rules set for how licenses will be issued to cannabis businesses. The sale of legal pot in the state is still a year away. And, of course, marijuana remains illegal on the federal level.

    But already the rush is on to get a piece of what could be a $4.2 billion industry in the Empire State.

    Brokers are talking to landlords about leasing storefronts to dispensaries. Representatives of out-of-state cannabis businesses are flying in to scope out properties. And suppliers of medical marijuana are expanding in the hope that they will be able to branch into recreational sales.

    Agricultural land upstate is now marketed as being in the green zone for hemp farming or the construction of grow houses for cultivating marijuana.

    Its a land grab, said Gregory Tannor, a principal at Lee & Associates NYC, a brokerage that has been conferring with New York City landlords since November and has already lined up nearly 200 possible locations for dispensaries.

    Whats The Latest In New York Cannabis Legislation

    How to Open a Dispensary in New York

    This has been a big year for New York Cannabis.

    Firstly, recreational use of marijuana became legal in New York April 1st, 2021. On March 28th, 2021 the state of New York passed Senate Bill S854A. According to the New York state official website, Senate Bill S854A plans to:

    • Establish a New York state office of cannabis management
    • Expands the states medical-marijuana program
    • Establishes a state licensing system
    • Creates a social and economic equity program

    The official members of the Office of Cannabis Management were expected to be appointed during the last legislative session. However, to the cannabis industrys disappointment, the session ended with Governor Andrew Cuomo making zero appointments for the Office of Cannabis Management.

    Cannabis Industry insiders are disappointed that there havent been sessions called to complete the task. In fact, sessions are now projected to be announced during the next legislative session which commences at the beginning of 2022.

    Its only once the office of cannabis commission and its board is appointed that official full-length regulations for cannabis in New York will be approved and released. Those regulations will have clarifications regarding the application process and what it takes to qualify.

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    Is Cova Compliant With New Yorks Cannabis Retail Reporting Requirements

    Yes. Cova’sCannabis Dispensary POS Software and inventory management system can be integrated with all tracking and monitoring systems, including Metrc, and has all the features needed to keep cannabis retailers compliant, including:

    • ID scanner for age and card verification
    • Integrated inventory and sales tracking and reporting
    • Built-in product equivalency conversions and purchase limit enforcement.

    When Was Cannabis Made Legal

    Under regulations enacted as of July 2014, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo legalized the use of medical marijuana use by registered patients with qualifying conditions.

    Applications remained open for a short period of time and were closed on June 2015, less than a year since legalization. Applications for prospective entrepreneurs were closed on June 2015.

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    What It Should Include

    The key components of a formal business plan include:

    • Your businesss story what makes you different? Whats your businesss mission and vision?
    • Key people describe your business partners and yourself what about you makes you qualified to execute the business plan?

    Your plans to achieve your businesss mission, including:

    • Your plans to achieve your businesss mission, including:
    • Current and planned funding
    • Operations plan how you plan to run your dispensary operations
    • Security and compliance plan are you able to get and maintain the licenses you need to operate? What are your plans for protecting your dispensary from criminals?
    • Planned locations and layouts where are you planning to open your dispensaries? Have you verified that real estate and licenses are available in those areas?
    • Sourcing plan are you going to be a vertically-integrated dispensary that grows and packages your own products? If not, do you already have connections with cultivators/growers, distributors, and manufacturers so you know you can reliability source your products at a profitable price?
    • Financial plan budget and financial projections, including estimated costs and revenue, expected ROI, and time to profit

    How To Apply For A Dispensary License In New York

    New York Citys first medical marijuana dispensary

    The full layout of the application process for recreational dispensaries in New York is not yet released. Once they are, they will establish the full regulations of the states adult-consumption program.

    In the past, with medical dispensaries, applicants were required to pay a non-refundable deposit of $10,000 as well as a $200,000 fee if their license is approved. These regulations are brought forth by the New York State Office of Cannabis Management. You can find all of the currently available information on the rec program by visiting the adult-use hub on their website.

    With the infancy of the New York market and its regulations, we recommend hiring a consultant if you plan to open a dispensary when the state opens up. A couple of popular consulting firms include Higher Yields, Be Green Legal, Canna Advisors, and MJ Freeway.

    Something else youll need to keep in mind of moving forward is the local cannabis restrictions and laws. Some counties are even pushing to restrict the sale of cannabis in their jurisdiction. This situation remains fluid and we will keep you updated as the landscape evolves. As for right now, the New York Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Acts local opt-out clause only pertains to retail and on-site consumption.

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    Cannabis Banking In New York

    Before you open a dispensary in New York, you must secure safe and legal banking. Because its not yet legal on the federal level, many banks tend to shy away from doing business with a dispensary. This is why some dispensaries are cash only or do business with local credit unions.

    For New Yorkers hoping to cash in on the newly legal industry, there are still options. New York cannabis retailers will have to rely on state-based financial services. Financial crime expert Gabe Hidalgo told Reuters that he does expect New York to pass progressive banking legislation for New York banks. He also expects the States legal cannabis market to be fully operational by late-2022.

    The Cannabis Market In New Jersey

    One thing thats for sure theres good money to be made in legal cannabis in New Jersey if youre willing to overcome all the bureaucratic red tape and some stiff competition from established players.

    The most recent numbers released by the state show all the dispensary companies in New Jersey bringing in hefty yearly revenues:

    On the medical side, one of the largest dispensary owners in New Jersey is Curaleaf. In Q1 of 2020 alone, it reported record-high sales of $20 million before taxes and interests across the 17 states it currently operates in.

    Other notable companies that youll be competing with include:

    On the recreational side, Marijuana Business Daily estimates that the New Jersey adult-use market will generate $850 million-$950 million by 2024, more than states like Nevada and Oregon.

    Even the state itself has estimated that it would need 50-90 more cannabis dispensaries to keep up with demand.

    So unlike other markets, theres no need to worry about oversaturation, especially when retail dispensaries are expected to attract lots of people from nearby states like New York and Pennsylvania.

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    What Kind Of Licenses Will Be Available

    If you want to start a cannabis business, then the first thing to do is to check if your city or town is going to allow for it. Next, you can go in for applying for a cannabis microbusiness license. Ideally, you should develop a full-scale plan with complete market research and a well-defined business cycle before looking into the licensing. Here is a list of licenses you can acquire:

    The New York Times Has High Hopes For New Yorks Cannabis Industry

    First Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in New York Open ...

    The NYT reports that the recently approved bill is likely to create a $4.2 billion cannabis industry in the state.

    While using marijuana recreationally in the busy state is now legal, sales will become legal once the state implements regulations.

    New Yorkers can now have up to three ounces in hand for recreational use or 24 grams of concentrate. If youre 21 or older, you can now use, smoke, ingest, consume cannabis.

    Cannabis consumers are allowed to store up to five pounds of cannabis, as well. However, theyll need to take reasonable steps to ensure its secure.

    People can now legally smoke elevated plant matter in public where tobacco smoking is legal, setting a new precedent for consumption in New York.

    We expect this will encourage dispensary success once rules are in place.

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    The Importance Of Winning Over Neighbors

    On top of that, property owners may not want to rent to cannabis businesses for various reasons. Neighboring business owners or community leaders may oppose you and do what they can to prevent you from opening a dispensary there.

    For that reason, you may want to build connections and get a feel for the level of tolerance for a cannabis business in a community before trying to open a dispensary there.

    You can point out the security measures that you intend to implement to discourage criminals and loiterers and screen out underage patrons, as well as the environmental measures youll use to limit any cannabis odor in the neighborhood.

    How To Open A Dispensary In New York: What Should You Know

    Jun 13, 2021 | Cannabis Business, Entrepreneurs, Investors, Legalization

    Curious about how to open a dispensary in New York? Youve come to the right place.

    Heres where youll find everything you need to know about New York marijuana legalization, including the most up-to-date news and insight you need to open a cannabis business in New York.

    In March 2021, New York legalized adult-use recreational cannabis. The state has officially joined the ranks of states like Washington and California in legalizing marijuana for recreational use.

    The state governors office says the entire approach to regulating New York cannabis will involve:

    • Creating an office of Cannabis Management, which will specialize in regulating medical, adult, and hemp programs
    • Social equity licensing opportunities through an economic equity program
    • Egalitarian adult-use market structure that will make it easier to access capital for cannabis businesses
    • Technical assistance and incubation for equity entrepreneurs
    • Efforts to resolve damage to communities that have been disproportionately impacted by prohibition.

    Over the next year, we expect more information to surface regarding how to open a dispensary in New York. This should include the requirements, application process, and all associated costs.

    As we gain more insight, we will create more articles and list them as resources in this article.

    Interested in opening a cannabis dispensary in New York? Were here to help!

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    Please Call Rise Nyc Dispensary In Manhattan Today For A Personalized Nyc Medical Marijuana Consultation

    Starting November 21st, our Fp Wellness New York dispensaries have become RISE Dispensaries.

    Everything you love about FP Wellness will stay the same: the best patient care service, same location, and high-quality cannabis products.

    If youre a current High Risers loyalty member, you can continue to use your points and enjoy our program. Look for many new positive improvements in 2022!

    We will be celebrating our new and improved retail experience in early January with an event to thank you for all your support! Please reach out if you have any questions, and well see you at

    What To Look For In A Cannabis Pos:

    Medical Marijuana Distributors Eye NYC Locations As State Prepares To Grant Licenses
  • State compliance tracking:Metrc is why software is so important. Dispensary staff used to have to record every sale and manually deduct inventory. Now, having an API integration that manages this all seamlessly is paramount to save you time and provide peace of mind that youre staying compliant.
  • Hardware compatibility: As mentioned above, make sure the software and hardware you choose are compatible. Pick a cloud-based software that doesnt have hardware requirements so that you dont incur any additional hardware costs or have to change hardware if you change POS later.
  • Customer support: Your ability to get up and running quickly is important, but getting your questions answered long-term is just as necessary. As you demo different software, ask about the ongoing support process and level of support youll receive throughout your time with that vendor.
  • Ease of use: Software that fuels your retail business must be easy and intuitive. Staff need to be able to learn it quickly. As you demo different POS systems, pay attention to how the system functions and whether you think itll make your staff more productive.
  • Inventory management: Strong inventory capabilities will keep you compliant and competitive. Similarly, look for software that makes auditing easy, like having a mobile app. The right software will save you time and money in the long run.
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    Here Are 6 Tips For Keeping Your Inventory In Tip

  • Build a reliable supplier network: New states joining the legal cannabis market wont have a stable and reliable network immediately, but you will eventually. As you get started and as things evolve make sure you have all the information you need as you look for products and pricing. To help you create your shortlist, here are some of our trusted partners.
  • Prioritize compliance: Compliance is the single biggest factor for dispensaries, so you have to get this right. Make sure you have an easy way to audit your inventory and you build a culture of compliance with your team.
  • Standardize product naming conventions: To have good data, you need to have a naming convention to use across your systems. Make sure you have a global product catalog and same naming convention across all locations. Heres a post on standardizing naming conventions to explain this further.
  • Create layout and inventory compatibility: As you compare the four layout options described earlier, consider how compatible each is with your inventory. If all your flower is in bulk and weighed out rather than pre-portioned, do you have a layout to support or will you have bottlenecks? If you have many options for edibles, concentrates and topicals, do you have enough space for them all in your store design?
  • Opening A Marijuana Dispensary In New York

    Many states, including New York, have legalized the use of marijuana for medical and recreational purposes. According to data from Statista, there were over 7,000 dispensaries in the United States as of end-2020, with about 35 dispensaries in New York State. While New York permits retail sales of cannabis, there are certain laws and regulations addressing operating a dispensary. Therefore, if youâre interested in opening a marijuana dispensary in the Empire State, consulting with an experiencedNew York State marijuana industry attorneyis crucial for proper guidance.

    With almost five decades of extensive legal experience, I have the knowledge and resources to assist and guide clients in recreational marijuana industry-related matters, including operating a cannabis dispensary. Iâm available to discuss your unique situation and help you understand the laws and regulations addressing opening a marijuana dispensary in New York State. My firm is proud to serve clients in Long Island and surrounding communities throughout the Five Boroughs of New York City.

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