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Minnesota Cannabis Laws: What Users, Dispensaries, & Cultivators Need to Know

Minnesota Cannabis Laws

Minnesota’s New Era: Most people have heard of Minnesota referred to as the Land of 10,000 lakes, and that’s why it’s pertinent that in a historic move, the state has made a significant splash by legalizing recreational cannabis in August 2023. This progressive move forward in the MN marijuana legalized 2023 timeline comes after years of advocacy, legislative battles, and public debate. Minnesota has become the 23rd state to accept the recreational use of this once-controversial plant.

However, the path to legalization is not without its guidelines. The newly enacted law not only signifies liberation but also brings responsible regulation. It sets limits on the possession of cannabis concentrates and edibles, outlining the state’s intent to balance freedom with safety.

In this post, we’re going to go over the details of the Minnesota cannabis laws and just what users, dispensaries, and growers need to know. If you’re curious about the impact of Minnesota’s cannabis legalization, then we’ve got you covered.

*disclaimer: this is not legal advice and we are not a legal platform. All information within this article is based on research to provide our users with information about Minnesota cannabis laws in an easy to read guide. Keep in mind that rules/laws are ever changing and could impact the validity of the information below. This content was last updated in October 2023.

the progression of minnesota cannabis laws over the years

Minnesota Legalized! Full Overview

With Minnesota legalized, this promotes a green light into the state’s new era of cannabis acceptance. But what does this mean exactly for the residents and the state? Let’s break it down below:

Legal Age: Minnesotans aged 21 and older are legally allowed to possess and use marjuana.
Home Cultivation: The freedom to grow marjuana at home is permissible, though it comes with specific limits.
Office of Cannabis Management: To keep an eye on cannabis businesses, Minnesota has established the Office of Cannabis Management.
Municipal Retail Stores: Cities in Minnesota have the option to operate their own cannabis retail stores, giving communities greater control.
Business Licensing: The Office of Cannabis Management manages licenses for all cannabis-related businesses, assuring obedience to state regulations.
Recreational Dispensaries: Minnesotans can expect the opening of recreational dispensaries soon, providing convenient access to cannabis products.
Legalization Date: August 1, 2023

Minnesota Cannabis Laws: Legislative Journey

Bill HF100 Signing: In a pivotal move, Governor Tim Walz signed the long-anticipated Bill HF100 into law in July 2023.

Office of Cannabis Management: This comprehensive legislation introduces the Office of Cannabis Management, accompanied by an advisory council, setting the stage for organized and regulated cannabis activities. It also mandates the submission of reports, contributing to a more informed and transparent cannabis landscape. This bill represents a monumental step in the Minnesota legalized approach to cannabis.

Possession and Consumption

Effective Date: On August 1, 2023 marijuana became legal in Minnesota, with full decriminalization coming into effect.

Age Limit: Only adult consumers, aged 21 and above can partake.

Possession Limits: Public possession allows for up to 2 ounces of cannabis flower, while your private residence can hold up to 2 pounds. Concentrate, an essential element of cannabis, is capped at 8 grams.

Home Cultivation: For those interested in growing at home, you can grow up to eight plants, with a maximum of four flowering ones.

Usage Restrictions: It’s vital to consume cannabis in private properties, licensed areas, or your own residence. It remains strictly prohibited in schools, federal properties, correctional facilities, and, of course, while operating any vehicles.

Non-U.S. Citizens: If you’re not a U.S. Citizen, it’s advised to seek legal counsel before using or being in possession of cannabis.

Tax Rate: There’s a 10% sales tax, excluding medical cannabis products.

A visual comparison of allowed quantities of cannabis according to minnesota legalization

Medical Cannabis & Medical Marijuana in Minnesota

With Minnesota’s legalized journey, medical cannabis initiated a pivotal moment when legislation was signed into law on May 29, 2014. The program was poised for launch, marking a significant milestone. As of July 1, 2015, medical cannabis products became accessible for patients officially registered under the state’s Medical Cannabis Registry.

Patient enrollment reflects the growing recognition of the program’s benefits. By March 2017, over 5,000 patients were actively participating. Since then, these milestones have been achieved:

  • 10,000 patients in May 2018.
  • 20,000 patients by April 2020.
  • 30,000 patients as of January 2022.
  • And most recently, in January 2023, the program celebrated 40,000 patients.

Existing Medical Marijuana Laws

Minnesota’s medical marijuana laws provide a carefully regulated framework. These statutes enable patients with specific qualifying conditions to utilize medical cannabis, offering them the potential for relief. Nevertheless, these regulations primarily center around non-smokable medical cannabis products.

Licensed dispensaries play a crucial role in the distribution of these products, ensuring accessibility for those in need. These statutes have established a framework that prioritizes patient welfare, safety, and adherence, all while managing the intricacies of medical cannabis in the state.By prioritizing non-smokable options and maintaining strict oversight, Minnesota aims to strike a balance between patient access and responsible use within the boundaries of medical marijuana laws.

Changes from CHAPTER 63–H.F.No. 100

This chapter brings substantial changes to Minnesota’s cannabis landscape, potentially expanding the variety of medical cannabis products available. The new law places a strong emphasis on testing and appropriate labeling to ensure safety. Additionally, with Minnesota legalized, it introduces the concept of Tribal medical programs, marking a significant shift in the state’s approach to medical cannabis. With the establishment of the Office of Cannabis Management and an advisory council, the legislation is geared toward overseeing and regulating cannabis and hemp businesses while maintaining a firm grip on safety standards.

This comprehensive bill not only alters the medical cannabis program but also addresses various aspects of cannabis, from taxation and regulation to the rights of landlords and tenants.

Qualifying Medical Conditions

Minnesota’s legalized medical cannabis program began with a focus on alleviating the suffering of those with specific qualifying conditions:

  • Cancer associated with severe/chronic pain, nausea, or severe vomiting, or cachexia or severe wasting.
  • Glaucoma.
  • HIV/AIDS.
  • Tourette’s syndrome.
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
  • Seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy.
  • Severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis.
  • Crohn’s disease.
  • Terminal illness with a life expectancy of less than one year, if the illness or treatment produces severe/chronic pain, nausea, or cachexia.

Additional Qualifying Conditions (Over the Years):

  • Intractable pain ( Added on August. 1, 2016)
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (Added on August 1, 2017)
  • Autism spectrum disorder and obstructive sleep apnea (Added on August 1, 2018)
  • Alzheimer’s disease (Added on August 1, 2019)
  • Chronic pain (Added on August 1, 2020)
  • Sickle cell disease and motor or vocal tic disorder (Added on August 1, 2021)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder (Added on August 1, 2023)

Applying for a Medical Marijuana Card

To obtain a medical marijuana card in Minnesota and comply with the state’s cannabis laws, the process is streamlined and accessible online, ensuring patients with qualifying conditions can access the relief they need. The application process is conveniently conducted online, allowing individuals to apply with ease. However, it’s essential to undergo evaluation by a licensed medical professional in Minnesota, who will provide the necessary certification for your qualifying condition in accordance with Minnesota cannabis laws. This electronic certification is then used to complete your application.

You must be sure to submit the application within 60 days of receiving your certification. Since the program started in 2015, Minnsota’s Medical Cannabis Program has played an important role in enhancing the well-being of patients confronting severe medical conditions.

medical marijuana legal in minnesota

Medical Cannabis Dispensaries in Minnesota

With Minnesota legalized, there’s medical cannabis dispensaries, such as these:

Green Goods in Blaine

Green Goods in Bloomington

Green Goods in Burnsville

Green Goods in Duluth/Hermantown

RISE in Eagan

RISE in Hibbing

RISE in Mankato

Green Goods in Minneapolis

Green Goods in Moorhead

Green Goods in Rochester

RISE in St. Cloud

RISE in St. Paul

RISE in Willmar

Green Goods in Woodbury

Business, Licensing and Regulation

In the sphere of Business, Licensing, and Regulation, Minnesota stands on the brink of a groundbreaking era. The state is poised to grant licenses for cannabis cultivation, processing, and retail sales. Leading this charge is the Office of Cannabis Management, entrusted with pivotal duties such as releasing applications, issuing licenses, and shaping the regulatory framework for the adult-use sector.


As the cannabis landscape evolves, it’s anticipated that the first retail dispensary sales will kick off in Q1 2025. For aspiring entrepreneurs and business enthusiasts, this is an exciting arena to watch closely.

Licensing and Regulation

Minnesota’s cannabis laws establish a meticulous regulatory framework. A comprehensive system is in place to license, inspect, and oversee cannabis and hemp businesses. Businesses dealing in hemp-derived products must register with the Minnesota Department of Health. A variety of license types are available to cater to different facets of the industry:

  • Cannabis microbusiness
  • Cultivator
  • Manufacturer
  • Retailer
  • Wholesaler
  • Transporter
  • Testing facility
  • Event organizer
  • Delivery service

Each license category comes with specific application and renewal fees. Notably, the legislation prioritizes applications from social equity applicants, encompassing individuals with previous cannabis convictions, veterans, and residents from areas with intense cannabis enforcement. These provisions ensure an inclusive and well-regulated cannabis market.

Dispensaries

Minnesota’s legalization of cannabis have led to significant developments in the scope of dispensaries, such as:

First Recreational Dispensary: The state saw the grand opening of its inaugural recreational marijuana dispensary, “NativeCare,” operated by the Red Lake Nation.

Tribal Initiatives: At least two tribal nations are actively planning to establish dispensaries for recreational marijuana, showcasing the dynamic tribal initiatives in this area.

Advertising Restrictions: There are limitations with advertising restrictions as to how cannabis products and businesses can be promoted to the public.
Grant and Loan Programs: The state has introduced grant and loan programs to offer support to the budding cannabis industry.

Cultivation in Minnesota

The era of cannabis cultivation in Minnesota has undergone a transformative shift with the legalization of recreational use in 2023. To facilitate this, the state has implemented comprehensive guidelines for cannabis cultivation. Notably, as of August 1, 2023, cannabis seeds can be lawfully sold and regulated under the Minnesota Seed Law.

As MN marijuanas legalized 2023, this groundbreaking change paves the way for aspiring cultivators, offering a structured framework for their operations. Here’s what it means for those planning to grow cannabis:

Labeling: For those planning to grow cannabis, these regulations entail specific labeling requirements for seed containers.

Hemp Seed Testing: Mandatory testing of hemp seeds at the appropriate developmental stage.

THC Limit: The necessity of a certificate demonstrating that hemp seeds originate from parent plants with less than 0.3% delta-9 THC concentration.

Compliance: To ensure compliance, cultivators must meet these regulations and maintain THC concentrations below the stipulated limit.

Various license types are available for different cannabis-related businesses, from microbusinesses to retailers, wholesalers, and testing facilities, contributing to the growing cannabis industry in Minnesota.

Economic Implications

Minnesota’s foray into legalized cannabis promises substantial economic impacts. Anticipated tax revenue from cannabis sales will be channeled into bolstering public schools and enhancing substance abuse programs.

This additional source of funding carries potential benefits for education and addiction treatment. The taxation structure includes a 10% tax on cannabis product sales, in addition to the customary state and local sales tax rates, ensuring a responsible financial contribution from the burgeoning cannabis industry.

Public Health, Local Jurisdictions and Employment

Minnesota places paramount importance on public health, local governance, and employment when it comes to cannabis. Comprehensive initiatives are planned to safeguard residents’ well-being, including public health campaigns aimed at educating the public on potential risks of cannabis consumption.

The state will enact stringent regulations as follows:

  • Ensuring product safety.
  • Preventing sales to minors.

These measures reflect Minnesota’s dedication to responsible cannabis use and its commitment to a safe and informed community.

example of minnesota cannabis laws in practice for public health

Local Government Rights Under Minnesota Legalization

In the context of what’s legal in Minnesota, local governments have significant regulatory authority:

  • This grants them the autonomy to either permit or prohibit cannabis businesses within their jurisdictions.
  • It ensures that cities and counties retain the flexibility to enact regulations aligned with their community’s unique preferences and concerns.

While cannabis is legalized at the state level, the principle of local governance underpins its implementation, allowing individual areas to tailor policies to their specific needs.

Employment

With Minnesota legal, some things about the workplace change and some stay the same:

  • Employers maintain the right to enforce drug-free policies despite statewide legalization.
  • Employees must be conscious that even legally consuming cannabis outside of work can lead to potential repercussions within the workplace.

DUI

Road safety remains paramount: The law explicitly prohibits operating a vehicle while under the influence of certain products and chemicals, ensuring the safety of all road users.

Rulemaking & Regulations in Minnesota

Office of Cannabis Management (OCM):
The OCM is taking deliberate steps to establish formal rulemaking aligning with Minnesota legalization for adult-use cannabis and lower-potency hemp edibles. This comprehensive approach addresses crucial aspects of the emerging industry:

Product Labeling: Ensuring that cannabis products are properly labeled for consumer safety.

Business Licensing: Defining the criteria and procedures for obtaining licenses.

Cultivation: Regulating the cultivation process to meet quality standards.

Testing: Implementing stringent testing protocols.

Pesticide Use: Managing pesticide and fertilizer use for safety.

Energy and Water Usage: Promoting eco-friendly practices.

Product Disposal: Addressing waste management.

OCM’s Response to Municipal Complaints: Managing grievances.

Expedited Rulemaking Process: OCM has been granted the authority to expedite the rulemaking process due to high demand. Rules are expected to be effective by 2025.

Public Participation: OCM emphasizes public engagement in the rulemaking process, fostering transparency:

Public Sessions: Conducting both in-person and virtual sessions.

Advance Notices: Providing timely updates on the OCM website.

Opportunity for Public Review: Allowing the public to review and comment on proposed rules.

Learn more about cannabis rule making in Minnesota here.

a consumer holding a product following minnesota cannabis laws for packaging

Minnesota Legalization & Expungement

When Minnesota legalized recreational cannabis in August 2023, it ushered in a new era of legality and social equity. An integral part of this change is the automatic expungement of certain low-level cannabis convictions. The state has taken bold steps to ensure justice and fairness in this process by establishing the Cannabis Expungement Board.

The board plays a pivotal role in reviewing past felonies related to cannabis convictions for potential expungement or resentencing. The primary goal is to eliminate barriers that individuals with prior cannabis offenses face during job or housing background checks.

The Cannabis Expungement Board comprises key stakeholders, ensuring a comprehensive and informed approach:

  • Chief Justice of the Supreme Court: Representing the judicial system.
  • Attorney General: Providing legal expertise.
  • State Public Defender: Advocating for defendants’ rights.
  • Commissioner of Corrections: Ensuring the correctional perspective.
  • Public Member with Relevant Experience: Offering community insight.

Learn more about expungement in Minnesota and what the state is doing to right the past wrongs and offer a fresh start here.

Tribal Nations in Minnesota

Minnesota’s exceptional rapport with its tribal nations significantly shapes the state’s cannabis scenario. Minnesota boasts 11 federally acknowledged tribal governments, each functioning as autonomous entities with their distinct regulations and governance structures. These tribes have the authority to independently regulate cannabis on their lands, a right that Minnesota’s cannabis law respects and upholds.

To aid in cooperation and maintain effective governance, the governor holds the power to establish compacts with tribal governments. These compacts are vital for addressing cannabis industry jurisdiction within tribal territories. By doing so they promote the creation of safe, regulated markets and open the doors up for economic development on tribal lands.

Stemless: Transforming How Cannabis Dispensaries Engage with Customers

In the scope of the evolving Minnesota cannabis laws, staying ahead in the dispensary game is a game-changer. And Stemless is here to revolutionize the way cannabis dispensaries connect with their customers, harnessing the power of customer relationship management (CRM) software. Here’s some of the most notable solutions that Stemless has to offer:

Loyalty Program: Loyalty Marketing for Dispensaries – Scale your customer base by rewarding loyalty. Stemless helps you establish robust loyalty marketing, ensuring that your customers keep coming back.

Targeted Text Messaging: SMS Marketing for Dispensaries – The magic text message marketing tool you need. With a staggering 91% open rate and in-depth consumer behavior analytics, text messaging marketing is a potent tool to engage your customers effectively.

Integrations: Integration Solutions for Dispensaries -Use integrations to create powerful customer journeys. Stemless understands that growth marketing isn’t by accident. That’s why we’ve built deep and powerful integrations with leading software providers to remove marketing pain points and elevate your customers’ experience. After all, happy customers are the cornerstone of the best growth marketing strategies.

Conclusion

When it comes to Minnesota’s journey with legalized cannabis, it’s marked by MN marijuanas legalized 2023 timeline, and is a prominent stride towards a more progressive and informed approach to marjuana use. The state has implored safety measures and regulations designed to protect its residents while allowing for economic growth within the cannabis industry.

While there’s a green future ahead for Minnesota, it’s crucial to stay updated on responsible consumption and adhere to the state laws.

For cannabis businesses looking to thrive in this dynamic environment, Stemless stands as a light in the darkness in marketing for weed dispensaries. Stemless is the solution to finding your go-to expert in marketing for weed dispensaries.

By upholding a dedication to best practices, safety, and the well-being of the community, Minnesota’s foray into legalized cannabis is positioned to emerge as a triumphant narrative within the nationwide transition toward greater marijuana acceptance.

*disclaimer: this is not legal advice and we are not a legal platform. All information within this article is based on research to provide our users with information about Minnesota cannabis laws in an easy to read guide. Keep in mind that rules/laws are ever changing and could impact the validity of the information above. This content was last updated in October 2023.