New Cannabis Opportunities Abound
In any year, this growth rate is admirable but to have this growth during a global pandemic in 2020 shows the resilience of the cannabis sector.
Global cannabis sales are projected to reach $55.9 billion in 2026, equating to more than a 17% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) from 2020. This past election gave new momentum to the Cannabis Industry, propelling it toward the future of broader legalization that continues to unfold.
In November, voters approved legalization ballot measures in Arizona, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota. Since then, lawmakers across the country are developing and passing legislation to expand existing programs and create new ones.
After November’s election, the momentum toward broader legalization continues to build. Lawmakers across the country are developing and passing legislation to expand existing programs and create new ones. Below are some of the current emerging opportunities across North America.
- Before the March 9, 2021 deadline, three-hundred and seventy-seven (377) applicants, each paid a $25,000 non-refundable application fee to the state for a chance at thirteen (13) new Marijuana Establishment licenses. These licenses are for sparsely populated counties with fewer than two (2) licensed Marijuana Establishments.
- The Arizona Department of Health Services is currently developing the rules for twenty-six (26) social equity Marijuana Establishment licenses. Municipalities are tasked with setting local regulations prior to April 5, 2021, and draft social equity rules will most likely be released in April.
- Considering there are only one-hundred and thirty (130) licensed Marijuana Establishments to date and there were nearly four-hundred (400) applicants for thirteen (13) licenses in rural counties, the social equity licenses will be extremely valuable. The upcoming social equity licensing round will be the last chance to get into Arizona’s cannabis market for quite some time.
- Nearly fifty (50) municipalities are in the process of developing and implementing commercial cannabis ordinances, including Costa Mesa, Encinitas, and Monterey.
- On February 22, 2021, Governor Phil Murphy signed the implementation bill officially launching the state’s adult-use program.
- Licenses will be made available for Growers, Processors, Wholesalers, Distributors, Retailers, and Delivery once rules are adopted.
- Marijuana Courier (delivery-only) licenses are currently available for social equity applicants.
- Marijuana Delivery Operator licenses (wholesale purchaser and delivery business) are in the works and will soon be available to social equity applicants.
- As of March 1, 2021, applicants no longer need an active medical marijuana permit to be eligible for the following adult-use license types:
- The Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) is currently working to establish the rules for medical cannabis businesses and the license application process, by the July 1, 2021 deadline.
- On February 27, 2021, Virginia lawmakers passed legislation legalizing a commercial, recreational cannabis program. Gov. Ralph Northam is expected to sign the bill.
- Gov. Northam may push lawmakers to speed up the rollout of adult-use cannabis in the state.
- Further legalization is likely on the horizon for Connecticut, Florida, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, and Wyoming.
- Kansas, Kentucky, South Carolina, and Alabama could legalize medical cannabis in 2021.
- On January 12, 2021, the regulations for Mexico’s medical cannabis program were officially published in the country’s Official Gazette.
- Opportunities are now available to secure medical cannabis production, manufacturing, quality control laboratory, and import/export licenses.
- Last week, the Senate Chamber of Deputies approved a bill to legalize adult-use of cannabis, the bill is now en route to the full Senate for a vote.
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