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massachusetts cannabis industry
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On November 8, 2016, Bay State voters approved Question 4, the historic MPP-supported ballot initiative that ended marijuana prohibition for adults 21 and older. As a result, cannabis became legal for adults to grow and possess in Massachusetts on December 15, 2016.
The first sales began on November 20, 2018, when two licensed retail stores began selling cannabis to adults. Five stores were open by the end of the year, and more than 20 are now open across the state. Massachusetts is now the only state on the East Coast with state-legal, adult-use cannabis sales. (Maine’s stores are not expected to open until late 2019 or 2020.)
Significant progress has been made in 2019. The state’s first-of-its-kind social equity program finally began to show signs of success after some frustrating initial delays. Additionally, the Cannabis Control Commission published draft regulations for home delivery and social consumption in June and is working to finalize those policies.
Although Question 4 won a decisive victory among voters in 2016, it soon became clear that the law would need to be defended from interference by the Massachusetts Legislature, which quickly moved to make changes to the implementation timeline and other key aspects of the law. Sparking controversy, a small group of legislators met in a special, non-transparent legislative session during the final days of 2016 to delay the opening of cannabis businesses by six months. Throughout the 2017 legislative session, MPP worked both inside and outside the statehouse to defend the will of the voters from further legislative interference.
Fortunately, thanks to thousands of supporters making calls and pressuring lawmakers, the legislature ultimately discarded a flawed proposal from the House and instead passed a compromise bill that largely respects the will of the voters. Gov. Charlie Baker signed it into law on July 28, 2017. MPP’s summary of the revised law is available here.
Estimated market size
Massachusetts adult-use marijuana sales continue to rise, with aggregate sales approaching $140 million through the last week in May 2019.
how to start a marijuana business in Massachusetts
If you are just starting your marijuana business, the next best step is to start a Business Plan to help educate your team and be ready to apply for a marijuana business license. If you are ready to apply for a Marijuana Business License in Massachusetts, please Contact us or call our offices to set an appointment to get started. You can also select another State Opportunity, or fill out our Contact Form to discuss potential strategies such as Investment or Partnership Opportunities.