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oregon medical marijuana growers license

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Oregon

Is weed legal in Oregon?

Yes. In Oregon, adults 21 and older are allowed to possess and use recreational cannabis, which can be purchased from a marijuana dispensary or shop. Adult-use cannabis has been legal in the state since 2014; medical marijuana has been legal since 1998.

Legislation history

Following Oregon voters’ passage of Measure 67, the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act , in 1998, the state became one of the first to implement a medical cannabis program. In 2014, voters in the Beaver State approved the Control, Regulation, and Taxation of Marijuana and Industrial Hemp Act , or Measure 91, legalizing the sale, possession, and use of recreational cannabis.

New Oregon weed laws have gone into effect to address regulatory issues in the marketplace, from curbing illegal marijuana sales to keeping cannabis accessible to those who need it. In December 2018, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), which regulates the state’s marijuana market, tightened its licensing rules. In June 2019, the passage of SB 218 took things a step further , granting the OLCC permission to refuse initial production licenses at the department’s discretion.

The OLCC controls all licensing and regulation of the Oregon recreational weed market , while the Oregon Health Authority oversees all licensing and regulatory oversight of the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP).

Purchasing cannabis

Under Oregon adult-use marijuana laws, consumers ages 21 and older are allowed to buy the following at one time or in a day:

  • 1 ounce (28 grams) of cannabis flower
  • 16 ounces (454 grams) of a cannabis product in solid form
  • 72 ounces (2 liters) in liquid form
  • 5 grams intended for smoking or vaping
  • 5 grams of concentrates
  • Four immature plants
  • 10 seeds

Maximum THC limits per container for adult-use cannabis products are:

  • 50 milligrams in edibles
  • 6% in topicals
  • 1,000 mg in tinctures
  • 100 mg capsules
  • 1,000 mg extracts
  • 1,000 mg for other items including those not intended for human consumption

The Oregon Department of Revenue requires a 17% retail sales tax on cannabis and cannabis-infused products, and up to 3% in local taxes in some locations. Cannabis may only be purchased from an OLCC-licensed retailer.

Medical marijuana patients and their caregivers can buy cannabis from an OLCC-sanctioned retailer or an OMMP-approved dispensary as long as they have photo identification and a valid OMMP card. They are allowed to purchase:

  • 24 ounces (680.4 grams) of flower
  • 16 ounces (453.6 grams) of a cannabis product in solid form
  • 72 ounces (2.1 liters) in liquid form
  • 16 ounces (453.6 grams) of concentrates
  • 5 grams (0.2 ounces) of extract
  • Four immature plants
  • 50 seeds

Maximum THC limits per container for medical cannabis products are:

  • 100 milligrams in edibles
  • 6% in topicals
  • 4,000 mg in tinctures
  • 4,000 mg capsules
  • 4,000 mg extracts
  • 4,000 mg for other items including those not intended for human consumption

Retailers are allowed to deliver cannabis to patients, caregivers, and adult-use consumers throughout the state. Retailers registered to serve medical marijuana patients may even deliver to places in Oregon where marijuana sales are not allowed.

Finding licensed dispensaries in Oregon

Consumers can find licensed dispensaries in Oregon and search by city including Eugene, Portland, and Salem. Many dispensaries in Oregon offer delivery and curbside pickup services in addition to storefront sales.

Consuming cannabis

Adults ages 21 and older can legally consume cannabis on private property. They are not allowed to consume recreational marijuana in a public place, including establishments such as bars and restaurants licensed to serve liquor. Consuming cannabis is also illegal in a parked car in public view, while driving, or riding as a passenger.

Possessing cannabis

On private property or in possession while in public, recreational users may possess up to:

  • 1 ounce (28 grams) of cannabis flower
  • 16 ounces (454 grams) of a cannabis product in solid form
  • 72 ounces (2 liters) in liquid form
  • 5 grams intended for smoking or vaping
  • 5 grams of concentrates
  • Four immature plants

Gifting to adults ages 21 and older is allowed if it doesn’t exceed possession limits. It cannot include a financial transaction — such as a raffle, cover charge, or donation. The state considers these actions a marijuana sale. Extracts and concentrates purchased from licensed retailers are allowed but homemade ones are illegal.

Federal law makes it illegal to bring cannabis purchased in another state to Oregon or to travel with cannabis purchased in Oregon to another state, including the neighboring adult-use states of California, Nevada, and Washington.

Patients and their caregivers may possess up to:

  • 24 ounces (680 grams) of flower
  • 16 ounces (454 grams) of a cannabis product in solid form
  • 72 ounces (2 liters) in liquid form
  • 16 ounces (454 grams) of concentrates
  • 5 grams of extract
  • Four immature plants
  • 50 seeds

View the marijuana laws & regulations for Oregon.

How to Open a Marijuana Dispensary in Oregon

By FindLaw Staff | Reviewed by Bridget Molitor, JD | Last updated April 21, 2020

If you are over 21 years old and are interested in starting a marijuana dispensary or other type of CBD business, you need to be aware of regulation and compliance issues, and you need a solid business plan to avoid the common pitfalls of new businesses. This is especially true in Oregon, where the early legalization of marijuana — 1998 for medical use and 2014 for recreational use — means you face the competition of veteran cannabis companies. Staying ahead of trends and compliance issues can give your new business a helpful edge.

Cannabis Business Laws You Need to Know

The table below outlines the laws and rules you need to follow in Oregon, and where to learn more about getting your new business off the ground:

Important Laws to Know

Restrictions on Growing Marijuana

Who Can I Sell to?

What Can I Sell?

There are OLCC limits to how much you can sell to one customer in a 24-hour span:

  • One ounce of marijuana
  • Five grams of cannabinoid extract or concentrate – often used for vape pens or e-cigarettes
  • 16 ounces of solid forms of cannabinoid – usually a gummi, candy, or chocolate
  • 72 fluid ounces of liquid cannabinoid – such as body oil, consumable oil, or infused drinks
  • Four immature plants
  • 10 marijuana seeds

Note: Synthetic cannabinoids are “new psychoactive substances” (NPS) created by spraying lab-created chemicals on shredded plants. Many versions of NPS are illegal to create or sell.

Licenses and Permits

What Should I Charge?

This is a very competitive marketplace. You may want to check local pricing for products and carefully consider your business plan, funding, and loans when choosing pricing per item.

Cost to Open a Dispensary

Tribal Lands

Federal law recognizes that tribes have their own sets of laws on their land. Growing or selling cannabis or starting a business is regulated by the tribal governments.

State Parks

Products cannot be sold or possessed on protected federal park land.

State Lines

Taking marijuana across state lines without a proper business license is a federal offense.

Location of Your Business

Zoning Laws

Advertising

Laws are constantly changing – at this time, there are no regulations on who you can and cannot advertise to.

Packaging and Labels

Liability for DUIIs

Retailers of cannabis are not held liable when a customer buys marijuana and is later arrested or charged with driving under the influence of intoxicants (DUII). Driving while impaired by drugs is still illegal.

Effect on Full-Time Jobs

If you currently work for a cannabis-related business, you may need to consider conflict of interest or non-compete regulations in your employee contract.

Criminal Records

Oregon Governments and Organizations to Know

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

What to Expect in the Process

The application process is outlined in the OLCC Division 25 Section 845-025-1030. You can expect to:

  1. Submit your business forms to the Commission
  2. Request other parties to submit their forms, including:
    • Owners
    • Financial investors
    • Lenders
    • Anyone with more than 10% interest in the company
    • Partners
    • Other legal entities
    • Investors
    • Directors
    • Stockholders
    • Officers
    • Corporate partners
  3. Pay application fees to the Commission
  4. Submit names, fingerprints, information, and $35 for background checks for all owners, partners, and financial investors
  5. Submit requested details and business plan (listed out in the marijuana business plan below with more information)
  6. Wait for application and background checks to be reviewed
  7. Wait for approval of the application and background checks

Once approved, you can begin creating your new cannabis business.

Marijuana Business Application Denial Process

If the Commission denies your application, you can request to be reconsidered and have a hearing about your application. You will have the chance to address any concerns about the denied application. Any changes to the application or people involved must be sent in through a new form. You will likely need to pay the fees again.

Creating Your Marijuana Business Plan

When you start the application process for your startup business, the state requires specific details, including:

  • Personal information: a clear background check and forms focused on your experience and goals
  • Company info: company name, address of where the business functions, and mailing address
  • Building or location info: proposed floor plan for buildings, proof of right to occupy the premises, a Land Use Compatibility Statement (LUCS), plan for building security, employee qualifications, proposed training, product transport, etc.
  • Current Secretary of State phone number
  • Funding information for all third parties or legal entities
  • A business operating plan – professional guilds or resources can help
  • Documents for the specific licenses you need (see table above)
  • $250 non-refundable application fee

Unsure where to start? Oregon.gov provides a checklist to help new businesses get on their feet and a detailed, step-by-step business guide for marijuana businesses.

Marijuana Industry Jobs

Many jobs are available in the cannabis industry:

  • Producer– grows and harvests marijuana plants
  • Lab owner or lab tech – tests plants and products for compliance with OHA rules
  • Processor – transforms raw marijuana plants into other usable forms
  • Wholesaler – buys products in bulk and sells to licensed stores
  • Retailer – sells recreational products directly to the customer
  • Dispensary owner – sells medical marijuana to licensed patients
  • Transporter – drives plants to processors or products to stores

Related Resources

  • Oregon State Laws
  • State Marijuana Laws

Learn About Marijuana Business Compliance

  • Setting Up a Marijuana Business: The Basics
  • Marijuana Business Licenses, Permits, and Planning

Do You Need an Attorney When Starting a Cannabis Business?

Some businesses can get off the ground without an attorney’s help, but cannabis businesses are rarely among them. Due to the highly regulated industry and large financial investments required, you may want to seek legal advice on the type of business structure to choose and how to protect your best interests.

It can be useful to have your attorney picked out before a problem occurs. They can review your business plan to help you avoid costly mistakes. You can also find an Oregon attorney to handle the business startup and marijuana licensing for you — saving you time and money as you launch your business.

Starting a cannabis business or dispensary in Oregon requires significant funding and involves lengthy government processes. FindLaw’s page on starting a dispensary offers an overview of the process and helpful resources. Learn about compliance, the relevant laws, and other things you need to know to get started.