Update on NYS cannabis

November 7, 2022

With cultivators wrapping up harvesting and curing their crops from this season, a lot of consumers are still left wondering when they will be able to purchase legal cannabis in NYS. Some updates and good news are on the horizon.

After being the 16th state to legalize recreational cannabis use, New York has been hustling and bustling to get dispensary doors open and start making an estimated $32 billion in revenue. CAURD licenses have been submitted and are awaiting a response. Over 900 applications have been received and just around 150 will be chosen to roll out dispensaries in NY. The Cannabis Control Board is meeting on November 21 and will likely approve some of the first licenses at this point. This will give those approved up to 12 months to open doors, though things will likely move much faster than that. The CCB is hoping to see some doors open in as little as the next 8 weeks. GREAT NEWS for cultivators and consumers alike!

Another step in the right direction is the loosening of lab testing limits, which were previously set in a way that most cultivators would never see their products on shelves. They have decided to align more with California, Oregon, and Washington, which have all proven to be excellent standards to use as guidelines. There will still be strict testing done, but the parameters set for Total Viable Aerobic Bacteria content and Total Yeast and Mold counts have been revised to reflect more reasonable numbers for flower and pre-roll products.

Governor Kathy Hochul administration is looking for a way to test for driving under the influence of cannabis. As it stays in your system longer than alcohol or other substances, they have yet to find a viable way to set limits and test for it. No matter your feelings on local government, this is an important step in ensuring the safety of everyone on the roadways. Just as you would not want someone driving drunk, you would not want someone who has over consumed driving, either.

The governor’s administration is also looking into how to find and stop unlicensed sales already happening across the state. It is estimated there are over 1000 bodegas and smoke shops illegally selling cannabis off their shelves or from behind counters. Hoping to avoid arrests and charges, they are trying to procure a plan to get all locations to stop selling their products illegally. Likened to selling alcohol at a bar without proper licensing, there could be legal repercussions in the future if these places don’t comply. While some may see this as unfair, it only hurts the farmers and dispensary owners who are investing their literal blood, sweat, and tears into growing their legal businesses. We will have to wait and see what plan is put in motion to resolve these issues.

As more information is released, we will be sure to keep you updated on the ever expanding cannabis industry in NY. We hope to share some good news very soon. Until then, happy consuming!

Must be 21+. Please consume responsibly.