Cannabis Business Consulting: New York-Specific Industry Regulations and Laws

Cannabis Business Consulting: New York-Specific Industry Regulations and Laws

As more and more states vote to recognize cannabis as a valid medicine (or a safe recreational product for those of legal age), it’s an incredibly exciting time for budding entrepreneurs to join the fray. 

That said, it’s not for the faint of heart. Because there are so many potential pitfalls in the licensing, business planning, branding and other aspects of bringing a cannabis enterprise to market, most analysts recommend that new and seasoned entrepreneurs alike seek out cannabis business consulting. New York, in particular—where the state’s recent embrace of adult-use cannabis has made it a hotbed of opportunity—is one jurisdiction where having a skilled guide is essential to launching a successful enterprise.

With that in mind, let’s explore some of the areas in which engaging with a cannabis business consultant could pay big dividends down the road.  

Cannabis Business Consulting New York: A Unique Regulatory Environment

New York’s passage of the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA) established two governing bodies to help smooth the transition to adult-use cannabis. The Cannabis Control Board (CCB) is designed to work in tandem with the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) to formulate regulations concerning cannabis business licenses, implementation of social and economic equity plans, and other actions relating to a well-regulated cannabis industry. In particular, the state will offer several types of licenses, including:

  • Adult-Use Cultivator License
  • Adult-Use Processor License
  • Adult-Use Distributor License
  • Adult-Use Retail Dispensary License
  • Microbusiness License
  • Delivery License
  • Nursery License
  • Small Business Adult-Use Cooperative License
  • Adult-Use On-Site Consumption License

Rather than issuing cannabis business licenses in groups, New York is offering most if not all types simultaneously. This means that applicants must understand the regulatory framework and be laser-focused on the type of license they’re pursuing. It’s precisely the type of environment that demands cannabis business consulting; New York has signaled that, unlike in some other states, it will discourage or disallow completely the type of vertical integration that characterizes the cannabis industry. It’s just another signal that a strong knowledge of the regulatory framework and licensing requirements will be mandatory for those seeking to enter the field. 

Cannabis Business Consulting New York: State-Specific Requirements, Crafting a Business Plan

New York’s new cannabis regulatory offices have signaled that strong preference will be given to social and economic equity applicants. This is in concordance with the wording of the state’s adult-use bill, which directs the office to prioritize applications by people from communities disproportionately impacted by cannabis enforcement, in addition to those identified as minority- or women-owned businesses, distressed farmers, or service-disabled veterans.

Then there’s the subject of a business plan. While it’s not yet known if the OCM/CCB will require submission of a business plan with your license application, you will certainly need to create one. And as any cannabis industry veteran knows: Crafting a business plan and getting a handle on the regulatory, financial, and marketing landscapes requires both intense focus and the help of an experienced and trustworthy guide.

If you’re serious about entering the New York cannabis industry, consider a cannabis business consulting agency to guide you through the process. A good agency will be perfectly positioned to help new and emerging cannabis companies find financial and banking solutions, connect with potential stakeholders, and chart a course for success in this challenging new landscape. With their guidance, you can make inroads in a very convoluted process!