2021 has been a giant yr for the hashish business. We’ve got seen a number of states cross laws both allowing grownup use, or allowing or increasing a medical marijuana program. Some states have launched new license sorts, and a few have issued new license awards. Whereas the principle space of business development continues to be on the state stage, a number of payments launched in Congress this yr have indicated that we might even see some thrilling motion on the federal stage within the coming yr.
Under, we break down among the largest issues we’ve seen within the business this yr.
State Legalization Laws – New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, New Mexico, Virginia and Alabama
Six states legalized some type of hashish use this yr, with New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, New Mexico, and Virginia all legalizing adult-use hashish, whereas Alabama legalized medical hashish.
Since legalization, New York has been making strides in direction of getting the grownup use program up and operating. As we blogged in October, the New York Hashish Management Board held its first assembly on October 5, 2021. On the assembly, the senior workers was authorised, and there have been discussions concerning growing public schooling initiatives and outreach within the close to future.
New Jersey has additionally acted quick on growing its grownup use program. New Jersey launched the grownup use laws in August, and solely a month later had offered the framework for its application, that are already open as of December 15, 2021 for manufacturing and cultivation license candidates. Retail functions will open quickly, as effectively, in early 2022.
Virginia has additionally legalized grownup use, with retail gross sales anticipated to start in 2024. New Mexico expects to see gross sales on a shorter timeline, projecting retail hashish to start out no later than April 2022.
This yr, we additionally noticed Alabama develop into the 37th state to legalize medical marijuana. Many different states additionally expanded their medical packages this yr.
Supply Licenses – Massachusetts
In early June, we noticed the Massachusetts Hashish Management Fee announce a brand new supply license. As of now, that license sort is out there solely to Financial Empowerment and Social Fairness Program Individuals.
The already-existing Marijuana Courier license permitted license holders to supply marijuana on to shoppers and medical sufferers from retailers and remedy facilities. Nonetheless, this new Supply Operator license additionally permitted license holders to buy marijuana and marijuana merchandise straight from cultivators and producers for supply on to shoppers. Moreover, Supply Operators are capable of retailer merchandise in a single day, in contrast to Couriers.
Federal Laws – Legalization and the SAFE Act
The federal authorities stays comparatively conservative on enacting hashish reform, however we’ve seen some motion this yr suggesting largest modifications to come back. The SAFE Banking Act was re-introduced in Congress this yr, and handed within the Senate. Whereas it has not handed the Home or develop into legislation, it kicked off broader laws launched later within the yr—together with a federal decriminalization invoice within the works underneath Senators Schumer, Booker, and Wyden. Congress can be contemplating legal guidelines associated to descheduling and sentencing reform, expungement, shopper safety, veteran entry, and hemp and CBD regulation enlargement.
2021 License Awards – Illinois and New Jersey
Each New Jersey and Illinois awarded licenses this yr, with New Jersey issuing 14 licenses in October and one other 30 in December and Illinois issuing 55. With the grownup use functions already stay in New Jersey, we anticipate to see quite a lot of development within the New Jersey business within the coming yr.
2021 has been a giant yr for state authorities assist of the hashish business, and we’ve additionally seen elevated assist from different main firms. For example, Amazon introduced its assist for federal hashish reform laws, and eliminated hashish from its drug screening packages for unregulated positions. The continued and elevated assist for the business by main firms could assist transfer the needle on federal assist, and assist in states that haven’t but legalized hashish.