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Commercial Medical Marijuana Licenses

If you have been considering getting into the medical marijuana business, one of the first steps you want to take is applying for a commercial medical marijuana license. That being said, you might wonder, which commercial medical marijuana license is right for you? There are a variety of potential licenses you can apply for, including processing licenses, provisioning licenses, secure transporter licenses, growing licenses, and safety compliance licenses. An experienced medical marijuana attorney can answer any questions you might have about Michigan commercial medical marijuana licenses and can help you get the application process started.

Processing License

One of the Michigan commercial medical marijuana licenses a person can apply for is a processing license. A processing license applies to a commercial facility that buys marijuana from a grower or a place that grows marijuana. A processing license can allow a company to buy marijuana and extract resin to create marijuana infused products. The facility can then package and transfer these products to a provisioning center.

This type of license only authorizes purchase of marijuana from a grower. The processing license also only allows sale to a provisioning center. Marijuana can also only be transported by a secure transporter. To have this type of license, people or their investors cannot also have an interest in a safety compliance facility or a secure transporter. The regulations and eligibility for this license are the same as for the grower's license. In fact, these eligibility rules and regulations apply to all licenses.

Provisioning License

Provisioning licenses apply to provisioning centers. After marijuana is grown and processed, it goes to a provisioning center. This center acts as the retail seller, also known as the medical marijuana dispensary. The provisioning license allows the center to sell directly to medical marijuana patients or their caregivers.

A provisioning center license only allows medical marijuana business owners to obtain marijuana from a grower or a processor. They can only sell or transfer marijuana to a registered primary caregiver or a registered patient with this license. Again, transporting marijuana must happen through a secure transporter. They can also send marijuana and marijuana products to a safety compliance facility, but only through a secure transporter.

Before someone can sell marijuana to a patient or a caregiver, they need to check with the statewide monitoring system to make sure that the patient or caregiver is registered and that the sale will not exceed the daily purchasing limit that the Medical Marijuana Licensing Board establishes. The sale or consumption of alcohol or tobacco is also prohibited in a provisioning center. In addition, a doctor cannot conduct a medical exam or give out registration ID cards to patients on the premises.

Secure Transporter License

Transporting medical marijuana between these various facilities also requires a person procuring one of the Michigan commercial medical marijuana licenses. A person needs a secure transporter state license if they intend on transporting marijuana from one place to another. But, keep in mind that this license does not allow people to deliver marijuana from a provisioning center to a caregiver or a patient.

This license will also allow individuals to store and transport both marijuana and money related to it between marijuana facilities. The marijuana must go to a facility – not an individual patient or a caregiver. Eligibility for this license requires that the applicant and their investors cannot have a vested interest in a person who has another type of license. They also cannot be a registered caregiver or patient.

A secure transporter licensee also must:

  • Have a chauffeur's license provided by the state of Michigan
  • At least two people traveling with the marijuana, and at least one person remaining with the marijuana always
  • Establish a route plan and enter this into the statewide monitoring system. If stopped by law enforcement, the driver must provide a copy of this route
  • Keep the marijuana in sealed containers that are not accessible during transfer
  • Make sure that the vehicle transporting marijuana does not have markings that indicate the transfer of marijuana

The transporter can be subject to inspection by the police during the transfer.

Safety Compliance License

Of the Michigan commercial medical marijuana licenses, the safety compliance license is arguably the most important. Safety compliance centers test marijuana for contaminants before it can be sold. In addition, marijuana will get tested for levels of tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabinoids. This information will go on the packaging for the marijuana. Such a facility must be accredited by an entity that the Board has approved. This must happen within one year of the license being issued. Or, the facility must have provided drug testing services to the state in the past, or it must be a vendor that has good standing for this service. The Board can grant a variance of this requirement if necessary.

Eligibility for this license requires that the applicant cannot have a vested interest in a person who has another license. A safety compliance facility also must do the following. First, they must perform tests that certify that marijuana is free (to a reasonable degree) of chemical residues such as insecticides or fungicides. They also must use validated testing methods to test the levels of THC, THC acid, CBD, and CBD acid in the marijuana.

In addition, the safety compliance facility must determine if the marijuana complies with Board standards for mycotoxin and microbial content. Then they must perform tests to determine if the marijuana complies with good manufacturing practices. They also must enter inventory and transactions into the statewide monitoring system. They must secure lab space that is not accessible by the public. Finally, they must make sure that they employ at least one staff member with an advanced degree in a related field, such as laboratory or medical sciences.

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