A 7 Step Guide On How To Start A Legal Cannabis Business by Crystal Wilson

marijuana plants
Jay Leiderman
By: Jay Leiderman
May 01 2020

            Source: Pixabay 

Starting a cannabis business is a great idea. The latest market trends show the cannabis industry is booming. It’s on an explosively upward trend, with sales expected to hit $20.2 billion by 2021 thanks to the increased legalization and  growing user base.

However, starting and running a successful brand like industrialhempfarms.com which deals with everything hemp isn’t easy. The industry is highly regulated and full of hurdles. Only entrepreneurs with a strong determination to succeed will make it.

Getting everything right from the start is the key to success. That’s why this comprehensive guide on starting a legal cannabis business will benefit you.

1. Develop a Good Business Idea 

When starting a cannabis business, the first step is to come up with a unique and viable business idea. While most people are familiar with dispensaries and cannabis growing, there are many other ideas as well. However, you must decide what’s worth embracing, depending on your capabilities.  

Apart from producing and selling cannabis, you can deal with the middle part. That means developing software, designing, packaging, distributing products, reviewing products, and making cannabis-infused beauty products. 

But whichever idea you pick, make sure to conduct preliminary market research. This gives you a clear perspective on what you’re getting into and whether or not you can deal with the challenges. Proper research could save you lots of time and resources. 

2. Cannabis Training 

Once you have a good idea, acquiring the right skills and knowledge of your potential venture is crucial. Training does more than introducing you to the cannabis industry, it will prepare you on how to run your business within the regulations.  

Besides, training gives you a better understanding of the risks involved and the requirements to start your business. Customers need dealers who understand their products. That’s why learning about your customers and the benefits your product offers is essential.  

Consider enrolling in a cannabis course on your niche. If you have a friend dealing with the same business, then staying close to them will give you valuable information you need. 

3. Develop A Business Plan

Source: Pixabay 

A comprehensive business plan is a crucial tool for entrepreneurs. It outlines the necessary steps in building a business, and offers guidance on the objectives of the company. Besides, you’ll need a business plan to get the license and apply for funds. One can View Here to see how other competitors are doing in the market, and to which products they are catering. 

The business plan isn’t different from other business plans. The only exception is that it’s focused on the cannabis industry and your niche. Here’s how it should look like-  

  • Mission and Vision 
  • An industry overview 
  • Product 
  • Market analysis 
  • Competitive analysis 
  • Sales and marketing plan 
  • Management plan 
  • Operating plan 
  • Financial plan 
  • Appendices and Exhibits 

4. Register Your Business and Get the Right Licensing 

After you’ve developed a business plan, apply for business registration, permits, and licenses required as per your state government. State and municipality licensing requirements differ. Most states issue permits through local licensing agents, but in other states, you may need to file your company paperwork with the Secretary of State’s office.   

You will also need to pay the required fees. Due to the complexities in understanding and meeting the legal requirements, it’s worth finding legal help. Here are the primary legal requirements. 

  • Business formation 
  • Employer Identification Number (EIN) or Tax ID number 
  • General Business License 
  • DBA (Doing Business As) Filing 
  • Sales Tax Permit 
  • Permits (land use, zoning, signage, health) 

5. Prepare Funds 

Starting and running a successful cannabis business, or any other business is not possible without sufficient funds. You’ll need to incur expenses like licensing and legal fees even before the company is up. The amounts can vary depending on the type of business and legalities in your state or city. 

Besides, you need to have enough funds to keep the business running before it starts generating revenue and making profits. You’ll need to develop a budget taking into consideration factors like rental/leasing costs, employee remuneration, utility expenses, and other miscellaneous costs.  

To come up with a realistic financial projection, you can seek help from financial experts. This means someone who well understands the cannabis industry and the regulations in your area. This way, you will be able to secure funds from investors to keep the business operating until profitability.  

6. Find a Location 

You now have a business plan and enough funds for the business, its time to pick a strategic location. The choice of site influences the success of your business. You don’t want to choose an area that’s saturated with similar companies. Also, make sure the location is convenient for your target customers. The site must also be within the regulations in your area.   

7. Start the Business 

Once everything is in place, the business is ready to begin operations. It’s time to build beneficial relationships, establish marketing, and start making money. Acquire the necessary equipment, technology, and workforce to help you run the business smoothly. Setup adequate supply chain to manufacture high quality products such as cbd oil toronto 

This stage is one of the most challenging, and things might not run as expected. You’ll need to maintain your patience, stay focused, and operate within the laws. Develop good customer relations and get insights from them on what needs to be improved. In time, you will be proud of the progress your cannabis business is making. 


Starting any business is not easy. Launching and running a cannabis business, in particular, can be more challenging. You need to prepare yourself well by getting the right resources and skills for running a successful company. 

The location is of prime importance because of the strict regulations in the cannabis industry. Thus, you should start a business in an area with favorable laws. Having a significant amount of capital is equally essential. It will allow you to seek expert advice necessary for the life of your business.  

This comprehensive guide will help you to carve a niche in the lucrative cannabis industry. The cannabis market is worth billions, and it will keep soaring in the future.  

This is a guest post by Crystal Wilson. This post has been edited for syntax and grammar. The Law offices of Jay Leiderman is not responsible for the accuracy of the content herein or any opinions or ideas expressed herein.  This post is for entertainment and literary value and is not intended as legal advice.  This post does not establish an attorney-client relationship of any sort.  If you have legal questions about ideas presented herein please contact a lawyer knowledgeable in this field of practice.


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