Minnesota OCM Releases New Changes to Cannabis Law

Minnesota Cannabis Could Launch Sooner Than Expected

On March 5, 2024, Minnesota regulators proposed substantial amendments to the cannabis statute passed by legislators in May of 2023.  The bill, SF 4782, is 101 pages long and contains inline edits. The main changes encompass a new class of “Temporary” license that is exclusively for social equity applicants and that would be awarded via lottery this summer. 

Take this all with a heaping grain of salt as it still needs to be considered and passed by the legislature. This is an abnormal order of events, as the regulators do not usually redline the legislators’ bill and send it back to them for corrections before proceeding with rulemaking. Minnesota’s gamble could get the market up and running sooner, smoother, and more equitably, or it could cause avoidable delays and leave Minnesota’s Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) in the lurch like New York’s OCM.


General Proposed Adult-Use Program Changes

Along with some changes to definitions, the bill includes a bit more information on social equity licenses as well as relocation permission. Perhaps one of the largest proposed changes (besides the addition of “temporary licenses,” which we’ll get into below) is the removal of medical licenses.

However, the bill still includes the “medical cannabis combination business,” for cannabis cultivation and cannabis retail (dispensaries) which allows:

  • Cultivation up to 60,000 square feet of plant canopy
  • Cultivation of cannabis for sale in the adult-use market in an area of plant canopy that is equal to one-half of the area the business used to cultivate cannabis sold in the medical market in the preceding year
  • One retail location per congressional district that must always make medical products available to medical patients


Temporary  Cannabis Licenses: Application Requirements, License Caps, Property

Social Equity Applicants

Under this new bill, temporary licenses will be issued to those who meet the definition of a social equity applicant, which includes at least 65% of ownership qualifying for one of these requirements:

  • Convicted of or closely related to some who was convicted of a cannabis related crime
  • Resident of an area that meets certain standards for poverty or disproportionate enforcement of drug laws for 5+ years
  • Military veteran 
  • Current farmer or aspiring cannabis farmer that faces barriers to education or employment


License Requirements and Process for Temporary Licenses

The new bill would also change the licensing process from a point system to a qualified lottery. In this new system, there will still be an initial license application required to qualify for said lottery. Applications will require the following information:

The Office is required to notify applicants 14 days before the application window opens and must accept applications for 30 calendar days. This is a rather fast timeline once the application window is announced, and you’ll want to be prepared when it’s time to start submitting materials.


Temporary License Limits in Minnesota

The OCM’s bill also provides the proposed number of licenses that will be issued in each license category. Aside from unlimited microbusiness licenses, the Office proposes to grant this maximum number of licenses:


Cannabis Property and Permitted Operations

For temporary license applicants, a facility will not be required for the initial application. However, temporary license holders will not be permitted to engage in cannabis operations until they are converted to a full license with a property. This means that property and funding should be every applicants’ top priority in order to quickly begin operations after licensure.


Stay Ahead of Minnesota Cannabis Regulation Changes with Our Expert Insights

While these changes have not yet been voted into law, it is likely the Minnesota cannabis roll out will see some changes between now and license applications. In order to stay ahead of competition, you’ll need stay on top of all the possible changes coming your way. Work directly with Canna Advisors to stay abreast of Minnesota’s inevitable changes and evolving timeline. 

Reach out to schedule a time to talk with our team of consultants (or book an hourly consultation) and subscribe to our Newsletter to keep in touch.

Related Posts


Boulder, CO


P: 720-708-3154info@thinkcanna.com

Keep In Touch

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.