How to open a Dispensary in Oregon

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Oregon was one of the first states to legalize medical cannabis in the US in 1998. In 2015, the state began selling cannabis for adult, aka recreational use.

Opening a cannabis dispensary in Oregon is very similar to opening a busniness in any other legal state, but with a few slight differences. Below is the information you need to get a successful cannabis business up and running in Oregon.

What Kind of Cannabusiness can I Open in Oregon?

The Oregon Liquor Control Commission allows the below businesses to operate legally within the state. General requirements exist that specify all applicants should be at least 21 years of age and have passed a background check. As of today, you can open the following cannabis businesses:

  • Retail cannabis stores
  • Cannabis product manufacturers
  • Cannabis cultivators
  • Cannabis testing facilities
  • Cannabis distributors
  • Cannabis extraction services

Cannabis Legalization in Oregon

Measure 91 legalized the recreational cannabis by adults 21 and older as of July 1, 2015. Currently, the recreational cannabis market in Oregon is up and running, bringing patients and recreational cannabis users access to safe and regulated weed.

Oregon’s Cannabis Market

Oregon’s marijuana market

Oregon’s marijuana market – Image powered by Cannabisradio.com

A February 2017, reports by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission projected that applications for recreational cannabis businesses had far surpassed the initial estimate 800-1200 applications. At the time the report was published, over 2000 applications had been submitted.

As of right now, there are currently 418 registered medical dispensaries and nearly 1,200 recreational dispensaries throughout Oregon. In 2016, Oregon’s cannabis market was worth $5.8 billion. This can only be expected to increase in the coming years.

Licensing Requirements

The state of Oregon provides a lot of useful resources for prospective cannabusiness owners on its official website. Applicants are expected to submit a detailed record of their business model, including name, legal entity, state registration number as well as contact information if they want to be considered for the initial stage of licensure.

Furthermore, Oregon state requires proof that the business has adequate funding for its initial working period. During this stage, you are also expected to pay all of the associated fees, which amount to a $4750 licensing fee as well as a non-refundable application fee of 250 dollars. It’s important to not that your application will not be processed until payment has been received by the state.

Applicants will need to provide valid government documentation and undergo an extensive criminal background check. A statement from local authorities and a map clearly showing the storefront location are also needed to verify that the proposed business is not located in residential zones. Authorities will also need a signed School/Dispensary Proximity Affirmation Form documenting that the proposed location of the dispensary is not within 1,000 feet of any educational facilities, as well as other dispensaries.

Financial Requirements

The costs for starting a cannabis dispensary in Oregon can vary depending on a lot of factors, not the least of which includes the county and city you are in. The licensing fee amounts to $4,750. There is also a refundable $250 application fee, which needs to be paid as soon as possible. On average, opening a dispensary will cost around 200 thousand at a minimum, meaning that prospective business owners should possess at least 400 thousand in their budget.

What Does a Dispensary Make in Oregon?

Cannabis dispensaries can make anywhere from 50 thousand to millions of dollars, or even tens of millions of dollars annually. Regardless where your busines is located the potential profits are very high.

What is My Timeframe?

The amount of time needed to launch a cannabis business can often take a year or more. You’ll need to do things such as get finances in order, acquire necessary licenses, and source suppliers and employees.

Consulting Companies

These consulting companies provide a wide range of services. They can do anything ranging from helping with state licensing requirements and applications, to running and stocking your business.

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