Michigan to Ease Restrictions on Recreational Marijuana Applications

October 20, 2020


Starting March 1, 2021, Michigan will begin accepting applications for any cannabis applicant, regardless of previous medical licensure. In its October 6, 2020 announcement, the Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) stated that the rule change was due to the need to minimize the illegal market for marijuana. 

Cannabis applications were initially restricted only to applicants who had previously received medical marijuana licenses. However, Section 9(6) of the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act (MRTMA) allows for the easing of these restrictions if the MRA determines that additional state licenses are necessary to (1) minimize the illegal market for marijuana in the state; (2) efficiently meet the demand for marijuana, or (3) provide for reasonable access to marijuana in rural areas. 

The MRA found that the large majority—83 percent—of the seizures of illicit marijuana plants and products occurred in municipalities without regulated marijuana businesses. These illicit plants and products are not grown or processed under the strict conditions required by regulation, and are not safety-tested for contaminants by state licensed safety compliance facilities. Because of this, the MRA determined that the eligibility restriction was too high a barrier, and that greater participation in licensure is a critically necessary element to reduce the impact of the illicit cannabis market. 
If you would like assistance in starting your own cannabis business, contact John Mackewich at mackewich@marshall-melhorn.com or at 419-346-4155. 

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