If you’re a cannabis business in Colorado, the 2021 legislative session was a busy one for your business. With many changes to the state’s cannabis laws, there’s a lot to keep track of for 2022. Here is our breakdown of what any cannabis business in Colorado needs to know.
Starting in July 2022, retail cannabis products that have been properly tested can be redesignated as medical marijuana products by the proper license holders. For medical marijuana cultivation facility licensees or medical marijuana products manufacturers to do this, they must have received or generated the cannabis product from a retail cultivation facility with at least one common owner in control and tested the product. The designation cannot be reversed to retail. If excise taxes are paid or incurred before the transfer happens, they cannot be refunded.
Any changes in designation must be entered into Marijuana Enforcement Tracking Reporting & Compliance (METRC). All parties involved must stay within inventory limits before and after the designation; the change can’t put you over the limit.
Starting January 1, 2022, there will be a few changes to how cannabis concentrates are sold and regulated.
New Limit. Both recreational and medical marijuana retailers will enforce limits on concentrates of 8 grams per day for customers and patients 21 years and older. For medical marijuana patients between 18 and 20, the limit is 2 grams or a doctor recommended amount.
Required Handout. Both recreational and medical stores must provide all customers purchasing cannabis concentrates with an educational pamphlet that includes information on consumption risks and precautions, recommended concentrate serving sizes, and a notice explaining the criminal diversion penalties associated with cannabis products. This is not an immediate hurdle as Colorado will appoint a working group to draft the handout, but retailers should make sure it’s available once it has been created.
Labeling and Packaging Changes. These are also coming for concentrates before the end of the year, to be implemented in 2022.
Paperwork for Doctors. To authorize a patient to purchase more concentrate than what is allowed by statute, doctors will have to use a new uniform form stores will need to review.
Weather. Before 2022, in the case of severe weather events (like early snow), outdoor cannabis growers may take “reasonable steps” to prevent crop loss without violating state law, so long as they show the action was reasonable and necessary to prevent crop loss.
Starting on January 1, 2022, outdoor cultivators can file an adverse weather event contingency plan with the state. This will outline the actions to take in case of “adverse weather “ including freeze, drought, excessive moisture or wind, hail, earthquake, tornado, fire, or flood.
These changes are going to help most cannabis businesses in Colorado. As the state’s industry matures, these kinds of fixes are helping dispensary owners and growers take the business side to the next level and meet demand. Are you going to be ready for 2022?