State laws are now implementing rules that regulate access and usage of cannabis. Although these laws even differ across all states. In Illinois, the medicinal use of marijuana is now legal, while recreational use of the plants will implement by next year.
In Illinois medical marijuana is now accessible to all residents of the state through state-initiated programs on medical cannabis. Although, this is still subject to various requirements such as proof of residency and signed recommendation from a licensed physician.
Laws and Regulations on medical Marijuana in Illinois
In 2013, the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act was enacted, which legalized the use of Illinois medical marijuana in restricted circumstances. Through the years, the bill added illnesses and ailments that qualify for the usage of cannabis. Currently, there are about 30 medical conditions approved by the law.
This law also allows Illinois residents that have undergone legal screening processes to apply for a medical marijuana card (MMJ) that can grant them access to the plant. MMJ also authorizes the person to buy an estimated volume of 70 grams of cannabis every two weeks.
In 2016, the Illinois government reduced the risks of criminal charges on people who got medically approved of using marijuana. The law no longer charges criminal offenses to those who possess cannabis products. The most extreme case would be an application of fines that can reach up to 200 dollars per 10 grams of marijuana.
In June 2019, the Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act was signed, which allows the recreational use of medical marijuana. It would take effect in January next year. Further, this law would authorize Illinois residents aged 21 and above to obtain possession of not more than 30 grams of marijuana and to cultivate a certain number of marijuana plants. Also, this law would allow the issuance of business licenses like dispensary, infuser, transporter, cultivation center, and craft grower.
Current State of the Marijuana Business in Illinois
Legislations that have limited restrictions on the usage of marijuana, both medical and recreational, are now generating market sales, which are estimated to reach 700 million dollars. Entrepreneurs are now seeing challenges that entail the marijuana business in Illinois because of the increase in the number of people who want to explore opportunities in selling marijuana. The Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act allow more people to use marijuana; thus, there will be a more massive market demand.
People who already have experience in cannabis cultivation believe that entrepreneurs should create a distinct brand that will make them stand out against the tight competition. It is also essential that they conduct extensive research on expense costs and cash flow. Meanwhile, there is a guaranteed increase in the number of startup businesses that will emerge in the coming year, coinciding with the implementation of the Act. Hence, startup businesses should ensure the appropriate amount of capital and strategies that will sustain these funds for an extended time until there will be a guaranteed return on investment.
With the improved legislation on marijuana and other state-initiated programs, access to cannabis products has now become more convenient. Aside from its health benefits, marijuana can also be a game-changer in the business landscape of Illinois.