An overview of the medical and recreational marijuana laws in Mississippi
PUBLISHED MARCH 12, 2021; UPDATED FEBRUARY 4, 2022
In January 2020, a citizen-initiated measure, Medical marijuana 2020, to legalize medical marijuana in Mississippi qualified for the November 2020 ballot as measure 65, and it was overwhelmingly approved by 74% of voters. After some legislative issues in 2021, the revised Bill 2095 was approved in January 2022 and signed by the governor on Feb 2, 2022. With the medical marijuana program now approved, Mississippi is the 37th state to have legalized cannabis for medical use.
Under Mississippi’s cannabis dispensary laws, The Mississippi State Department of Health is in charge of planning out all the requirements to implement a successful medical marijuana program for the state and will be regulating all laws and licensing requirements for the same. All Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers will be registered with, licensed, and regulated by the Mississippi Department of Health.
MSDH officials said the department plans to begin accepting online applications for patients, medical practitioners, cannabis cultivation facilities, and others by June 2022. The MDOR shall issue licenses for medical cannabis dispensaries. They have 150 days to start issuing licenses and these must be awarded within 30 days of receipt of the application or within thirty 30 days after the initial 150-day period, whichever is later. The state has not put any limit on the number of legal licenses that will be awarded, and the medical marijuana market in Mississippi is expected to grow rapidly. Keep checking the MSDH website for updated information on the state’s medical-marijuana program.
Below, we’ve provided answers to as many questions as possible relating to Mississippi’s medical dispensary laws and licensing process. We will continue to update this page as new information becomes available. This page is informational only and should not be considered legal advice.
At Cova, we’re on top of cannabis compliance so you can focus on what really matters. Our automated compliance cannabis POS system provides in-built ID barcode scanners and purchase limits to ensure legal sales only to patients or caregivers with a valid medical marijuana card to remain compliant with the law.
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An overview of the medical and recreational marijuana laws in Mississippi
Qualifying patients, regardless of age, are allowed to buy 3.5 grams a day, six days a week- that's about 3 ounces each month. The MSDH is setting up a process for physicians to recommend medical marijuana to patients with certain debilitating conditions and allow such patients or their caregivers to purchase and possess cannabis as medicine. Marijuana can be consumed at the patient’s discretion but at no one time shall a qualified patient possess more than 2.5 ounces of medical marijuana to prepare edible products, topicals, ointments, oils, tinctures, or other products.
Possession of up to 30 grams of cannabis or 10 grams of synthetic cannabinoids, without a qualifying medical patient card, is punishable by a fine of $100 to $250 for the first offense, and penalties are higher for any subsequent offenses.
Patients with the following conditions can qualify for medical marijuana use in Mississippi:
Or another medical condition of the same kind or class as those enumerated and for which a physician believes the benefits of using medical marijuana would reasonably outweigh potential health risks.
Check out this comprehensive list of FAQs on Mississippi’s medical marijuana program.
No. Qualified patients may only obtain medical marijuana from licensed Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers.
Although marijuana was decriminalized in some form decades ago in Mississippi, cultivation is still prohibited and is punishable based upon the aggregate weight of the plants found with a person, corresponding to possession over the legal limit. Consumption only for medical use is legal, but medical marijuana cultivation is not allowed either.
Mississippi medical marijuana users may only consume approved medical cannabis in the privacy of their homes.
Everything you need to know about opening a medical cannabis business in Mississippi.
The Mississippi Department of Revenue (MDOR) is in charge of awarding licenses for medical marijuana dispensaries (Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers) and they have 150 days from Feb 2, 2022 to start accepting applications and award licenses.
A medical marijuana business is one that has applied for and received a license from the Mississippi Department of Health to cultivate, process, test, or sell medical marijuana. This may include cultivation facilities, testing facilities, and dispensing centers (Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers) where patients can purchase the medicine.
Anyone 21 years of age or older can apply for a license. They must not have previously held a license for any type of licensed entity participating in the medical marijuana program in Mississippi or any other state that has been revoked by the state licensing authority.
A minimum of 25 percent of the controlling ownership must be held by a current Mississippi resident. Entities may hold more than one license type at one time
Here are the main requirements for License Application
-Evidence of authorization to occupy a location for dispensary (e.g., confirmation of land ownership, identification of mortgages and lienholders, lease agreements, contingency agreements for sale or lease based on licensure status)
-Plan for operating as a cultivator, manufacturer, or dispensary
-Timeline for beginning operations at the identified location
-Tax identification number issued by the Mississippi Department of Revenue
When forming a Mississippi company, or registering a foreign company to do business in Mississippi, potential applicants must register with the Mississippi Secretary of State’s Office. As a part of this registration, entities are required to select a NAICS Code as part of the formation or registration. If the company is interested in being licensed as a part of the Medical Marijuana Program, the applicable NAICS Codes are 111419, 424590, 453998, and 111998. Applicants should choose from one of those available codes in order to complete the registration of their medical marijuana business in Mississippi.
We'll update more details on the application process as they are released.
Learn how to remain compliant with Mississippi’s medical marijuana laws.
Medical Marijuana Treatment centers must be zoned and treated like pharmacies. No marijuana treatment center can be located within 500 feet of a school, church, or licensed child care center. Local zoning ordinances must not impair the availability of and reasonable access to medical marijuana, and zoning can't be any more restrictive on them than it is on regular retail pharmacies. Hence, most pharmacy regulations will apply to medical marijuana dispensaries as well.
Licensed marijuana dispensaries may sell cannabis to qualifying patients or their caregivers with a valid medical marijuana patient card that serves as identification for qualified patients and caregivers that employees of Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers must verify. Medical Marijuana ID Cards are required for patients to purchase their medicine and will allow dispensaries to track the amounts purchased within the medical marijuana database, which each Medical Marijuana Treatment Center will have to use to dispense medication to patients.
Marijuana products can be sold in varying forms, including flowers, beverages, topicals, patches, tinctures, sprays, juices, smoke joints, vapes, edibles, capsules, lozenges, creams, and ointments. Offering medical marijuana in multiple forms allows patients to utilize their treatment in the way that works best for them. The preferred method will depend upon patients’ preferences for ingestion, and the type of pain and symptoms they wish to alleviate.
The Mississippi Department of Health will regulate requirements for employees of Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers. Employees will be able to assist each patient at the Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers to help them find and choose what may work best for them.
Medical marijuana will be taxed at a wholesale rate of five percent, and purchases will also be subject to state sales tax. Mississippi state sales tax rate of 7% would apply to purchases of medical cannabis, with local municipalities permitted to impose an additional 1% tax. Tax revenues will be used exclusively to fund the medical marijuana program itself.
The program will also generate revenue for the state through medical cards (which should cost no more than $50) and licensing fees for businesses.
No. INITIATIVE 65 is pro-small businesses in Mississippi. Mississippi medical marijuana is a free market, and there will not be a limit imposed on marijuana business licenses. However, each medical marijuana business will have to apply to and be approved and licensed by the Mississippi Department of Health.
Non-refundable application fees are as follows:
The rules and regulations may not limit the number of medical marijuana treatment centers.
The department shall begin issuing identification cards and marijuana treatment center licenses by June.
Every regulated cannabis market has its tracking and reporting requirements. Find out how Mississippi monitors commercial cannabis activity.
Most states require dispensaries and cannabis stores to track and trace all of their cannabis products for regulatory and compliance reporting requirements. Records identifying the source of each ingredient must include the date of receipt of the ingredient, vendor’s name and address, name of the ingredient, etc. The vendor’s batch number, lot number of the product, and control number used to identify all components in the marijuana product(s), as well as the grade and quantity, must be mentioned in inventory reports.
In Mississippi, Medical cannabis dispensaries shall report medical cannabis dispensing information every twenty-four (24) hours to the Prescription Monitoring Program provided for in Section 73-21-127. Dispensaries shall submit information as required by the Prescription Monitoring Program, including, but not limited to, the qualified patient's registry identification card number and the amount of medical cannabis dispensed to the patient.
Dispensaries shall submit information as required by the Prescription Monitoring Program, including, but not limited to, the qualified patient's registry identification card number and the amount of medical cannabis dispensed to the patient.
Yes. Cova has extensive experience in providing compliant dispensary POS systems to cannabis dispensaries all over the US and its Cannabis Dispensary POS Software and inventory management system always stay ahead of compliance with all the features needed to keep marijuana treatment centers compliant, including: