Minnesota is on the brink of a major shift in its cannabis policies. The House has recently passed a bill to legalize recreational cannabis, which is now awaiting Senate approval. This legislation marks a significant change from the state’s current stance on cannabis.
Effective August 1, 2023, the new laws will fully decriminalize the possession, use, and home cultivation of cannabis in Minnesota for individuals aged 21 and over. This includes the permission to possess or transport up to 2 ounces of cannabis flower in public and up to 2 pounds in a private residence. Additionally, individuals will be allowed to possess up to 8 grams of cannabis concentrates and 800 milligrams of THC in edible form.
The bill’s passage follows the legalization of medical marijuana in Minnesota in 2014 and the 2022 legalization of recreational low-dose hemp-derived cannabis edibles. The new legislation aims to balance the market, allowing licensed medical suppliers to produce and sell recreational cannabis. The exact amount they can sell will be based on a percentage of their business to ensure the stability of the medical marijuana market.
Another important aspect of the bill is the proposed timeline for retail sales of adult-use cannabis, which is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2025. However, it’s important to note that despite state-level decriminalization, cannabis remains illegal on federal property. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has issued clarifications regarding this, especially concerning gun ownership and usage of marijuana, highlighting the differences between state and federal laws.
The Department of Transportation also issued a “Recreational Marijuana” notice, addressing the implications of these new laws in the context of transportation regulations. Moreover, for those interested in entering the cannabis business, the State of Minnesota will be developing a regulatory framework and establishing processes for license applications.
This legislative change represents a significant shift in Minnesota’s approach to cannabis, potentially leading to new opportunities and challenges in the state. For more detailed information and resources, visit the State of Minnesota – Office of Cannabis Management, Minnesota House Public Information Services, and the Minnesota Issues Resources Guides.