Cannabis Micro-Business License
A Cannabis Micro-business License is required for a very small cannabis business to operate.
Micro-Business – Allows a licensee to engage in cultivation (on an area less than 10,000 square feet), manufacturing (Level 1 manufacturing, Type 6), distribution, and retail sale, or any combination of the four activities. Licensees will be required to comply with all rules and regulations, which will include, where applicable, regulations adopted by the California Department of Food and Agriculture and the California Department of Public Health, governing the activities they are engaged in.
- Must engage in at least 3 of the 4 activities
- Must indicate which activities on the application and supply the appropriate information for those activities
- Must comply with all requirements for each activity the licensee engages in
First introduced as part of Proposition 64 in relation to adult-use operations, the microbusiness license is now poised to be available to medical marijuana businesses too, courtesy of SB 94. The license would allow small businesses to act as a one-stop-shop; owners could grow cannabis in an area of less than 10,000 square feet, while also acting as a distributor, non-volatile manufacturer, and retailer.
This is essentially a smaller version of a typical vertical integration model, and can apply to indoor or outdoor cultivation sites, said attorney Habib Bentaleb of Harris Bricken.
“It is supposed to be a nice way for craft cannabis companies to differentiate themselves [from] what will inevitably be large-scale grow cultivations throughout the state,” said Bentaleb, who specializes in cannabis regulation and represents Gray.
Not only does this help preserve the type of small-scale or cottage operations much of the industry was built on, it streamlines and simplifies the application process, allowing entrepreneurs to apply for just one all-encompassing license. This doubles as a dramatic cost-cutting method, which offers mom-and-pop shops a slight leg up when competing against large, venture capital-fueled businesses.