How to start a Marijuana dispensary in California?

The flowers, stems, seeds, and dried leaves of Cannabis sativa plant are referring to Marijuana. This is a plant having mind-altering chemicals primarily THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) that is the second most common (after alcohol) psychotropic drug used in the United States. Working in the Cannabis industry demands more responsibility than most businesses. This industry is highly regulated and requires more licenses to work in the legal frame.


The marijuana industry has a variety of highly regulated activities that include:


  • Cultivation of Cannabis
  • Testing
  • Manufacturing
  • Distribution
  • Dispensary


A Marijuana dispensary is the last stage of the supply chain where the customer receives the product. These dispensaries have delivery and store-front options for customers. Every single activity at Marijuana dispensaries has its own licensing requirements that must need to follow:

1.     Rules and regulations for Marijuana dispensaries:

California allows Marijuana dispensaries on the state level, but still, every county and town does not allow it. If it is legal to have a Marijuana dispensary in a particular county or town, getting a license is the very first requirement.

2.     Set up your business:

Next step is setting Marijuana dispensary in California with the same steps required for any other California Business.

  • Decide legal structure
  • Select company name
  • Submit appropriate organizational documents

3.     Permitting Process:

Next is the permitting process for the city and county. California has different rules and regulations of every town and county. Follow several rounds of application, submit the fee, following hearings, and provide a bulk of information during the entire application process. This information includes:


  • Zone verification letter from local development department about the location of a dispensary that complies with zoning laws.
  • Criminal history and live scan of fingerprints to check any criminal background.
  • Complete a business plan with the financial forecast, cost, and detailed daily operational details.
  • It requires detailed information about keeping premises safe and secure, including the issues like proper security plan, including the issues like security policies, alarm systems, and fire prevention. It is also necessary to provide ownership of any other cannabis business with its financial benefits.
  • Explain the impact of the dispensary for the local community and how it will be beneficial for the neighborhood and the entire area.
  • It is required to pay thousands of dollars for the application process.

4.     Getting permits:

To sell cannabis and the products having cannabis in, seller permit and tax permit from the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration are essential. You must have the seller’s permit in place before you can apply for other required state licenses.


Main grounds of license denial:

There are a few reasons to reject the cannabis license application:

  • Incomplete application or application with errors
  • Violent felony conviction, fraud, deceit, or embezzlement
  • Premises with no proper regulations
  • No documented proof of wed income taxes


Cautions to open Marijuana dispensary California:

No doubt, Marijuana dispensary in California can be very lucrative. Still, you must need to consider a few competitions and impediments:

  • California has an established Marijuana black market providing stiff competition to the new legal retail shops.
  • Many local communities of California do not allow for licensing retail sales of Marijuana.