On September 8, 2023, the Maryland Cannabis Administration (MCA) announced the 30-day application period for the first round of new cannabis business licenses in the State.
The 30-day application period will open at 12:00 AM Eastern Standard Time (EST), November 13, 2023, and close at 5 PM EST on December 12, 2023. Applications submitted after 5PM will not be accepted or reviewed by the MCA.
Number of Licenses Available
The MCA will award up to 179 licenses as follows:
- 75 Standard Dispensaries - distributed by County
- 16 Standard Growers - distributed by Region
- 32 Standard Processors - distributed by Region
- 24 Micro Growers - distributed by Region
- 24 Micro Processors - distributed by Region
- 8 Micro Dispensaries - distributed by Region
Information on the number of licenses to be awarded by county and/or region, may be found on this document: Application Announcement
Submission Restrictions: An individual may only be associated with ONE application per license type, and no more than TWO applications within a given round. You also may not submit an application for the same license type in two different regions. Any application found to be in violation of these statutory restrictions will not be reviewed by the MCA or eligible for award in the lottery.
Social Equity Verification: Applicants must have at least 65% ownership held by one or more individuals who have been verified as social equity applicants. If one or more individuals who have not each been verified as a social equity applicant holds more than 35% ownership of the applicant, that applicant will be ineligible to receive a license in the first round.
Ownership Restrictions: Additionally, the MCA will not award any licenses that would violate statutory ownership or control restrictions. This means that while you may apply for both a Standard and a Micro Grower license, State law requires that you may not be awarded both licenses.
The MCA’s Social Equity Applicant Verification Portal is now closed. Individuals who have completed their submission within the portal and are waiting for verification from the State’s vendor will continue to be processed. Applicants who are pending verification from the State’s vendor are encouraged to work on other portions of the application, including the Operational Plan, Business Plan, and Diversity Plan, using the templates provided below. Applicants should not pay the application fee or attempt to submit an application prior to being verified through the verification portal. A completed and cleared verification report is a required component of the application.
New! Application Materials
The MCA is providing explicit guidance for developing the operational, business and diversity plans. The MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS for a cannabis business license application may be found here: Evaluation Worksheet.
The MCA has also provided detailed instructions on the requirements for submitting an application once the OneStop portal has been opened. These instructions can be found here: Application Instructions
Applications must use the MCA's templates. Templates for each of the required attachments can be found here:
Frequently asked questions pertaining to the application round may be found here
and will be updated regularly between now and December 12.