The Florida Department of Health announced last week that it will begin a new round of licensing for medical marijuana businesses that will double the number of vertically integrated cannabis businesses in the state. In emergency regulations released on Friday, the Department of Health revealed that 22 new medical marijuana business licenses will be available. This is a move that doubles the 22 businesses currently licensed to produce and sell medical marijuana in Florida.
The new emergency rule comes more than six years after Florida voters passed a constitutional amendment ballot measure in 2016, legalizing medical marijuana use. The following year, state legislators passed legislation regulating the state’s medical marijuana industry. Added cannabis business licenses as the number of registered patients increased.
Currently, the number of registered patients of medical marijuana has reached about 790,000, according to the data As announced last week, state regulators had to issue nearly two dozen medical marijuana business licenses to keep up with program growth. Until last week, the Department of Health took no action on issuing additional medical marijuana business licenses since the DeSantis administration took control of the state’s executive branch.
“This is an exciting milestone for Florida’s medical cannabis program and has been over five years in the making,” said Courtney Coppola, former director of the state’s Medical Marijuana Use Authority. Said florida news service“These additional licenses are an important step in moving the program forward for Florida patients and future licensees.”
florida Scheduled to be accepted in April
In December, the state health department’s cannabis regulator announced it had developed a process to apply for a new medical marijuana business license, with plans to accept applications in a “batch cycle,” according to media reports. Under the issued emergency regulations, the department will accept applications for 22 additional licenses between April 24th and April 28th. Former state health department general counsel, Louise St. Laurent, said the state’s medical marijuana operators were “thrilled.” according to an announcement last week from the regulator.
“Probably since at least 2017, there has been no shortage of companies whose departments are waiting and watching these rules in order to have a chance to compete for these licenses,” Saint Laurent said on Friday.
Florida’s existing medical marijuana operators were licensed under a 2014 law that legalized “non-intoxicating” forms of cannabis for a limited number of patients. The licensing round marks the first batch of new licenses issued since the passage of legislation regulating the state’s medical cannabis industry in 2017.
A 2017 law also required the Department of Health to issue licenses to black farmers with business relationships in Florida. Regulators announced in September that he would award licenses to men in Suwanee County, but legal troubles forced the health department to delay issuing licenses to successful applicants.
Recreational Weed Initiatives Planned for 2024
Florida has so far only legalized medical marijuana, but a constitutional reform campaign to legalize adult use of cannabis is currently underway, and the proposal will be reflected in the ballots in the 2024 election. I plan to Last week, organizers of a constitutional reform campaign largely funded by Truleve, Florida’s largest medical marijuana company, received enough votes from voters to back a bill that would require the Florida Supreme Court to reconsider the proposal. submitted a signature.
Under state law, the Supreme Court must approve initiatives before they can be put to the ballot. In 2021, Florida’s Supreme Court exercised its powers to reject her two separate proposals to legalize recreational marijuana, denying state voters the chance to participate in the initiative. But Jade Green, president of cannabis industry consultancy Next Titan Capital, said the fate of the 2021 proposal could hinder support for this year’s attempt to legalize cannabis for adult use. I think it is low.
“Florida is definitely a market of interest, especially compared to other more mature and more saturated markets,” Green said. “The main reason is that everyone has a similar belief that whatever happens in 2024, adult-use (recreational) cannabis will eventually come to Florida.”
Florida’s existing medical marijuana industry is estimated to generate approximately $1 billion in annual sales for state operators. Adding legal recreational marijuana would open the market to all adults in the state and provide additional incentives for companies to enter the Florida medical marijuana industry.
“If we can succeed in Florida until Rec (recreational marijuana) becomes widespread, we have a huge advantage in becoming one of the largest cannabis economies, not just in the United States, but in the world,” Green said.