Alabama Marijuana Market
The marijuana business consultants at Point Seven Group are experts in the Alabama medical marijuana market. We have successfully helped our clients obtain business licenses, design dispensaries, build identifiable brands, and operate compliant marijuana businesses. Our team of marijuana experts can help you reach your business goals in the Alabama medical marijuana market!
WHAT IS ALABAMA'S CURRENT CANNABIS MARKET STATUS?
Up until 2021, cannabis was predominately illegal in Alabama with a few exceptions for medical use. In May 2021, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed into law Senate Bill 46, now Act 2021-450, legalizing medical marijuana and allowing the use of cannabis with a physician’s recommendation for treatment of approximately 20 qualifying conditions. Prior to this legalization effort, there had been many attempts to widely legalize medical cannabis in Alabama but most efforts had been thwarted when presented to the state’s legislators. Cannabis in Alabama remains illegal for recreational use.
The medical marijuana program is overseen by a 14-member regulatory commission, which will guide rules and licensing requirements. The state of Alabama is not currently accepting applications for medical cannabis businesses. However, many predict that Alabama will roll out their medical cannabis program by Spring of 2023 depending on how quickly legislation moves in the state. The state commission has until September 1, 2022 to create a system that allows individuals to apply for licenses to produce, transport, and sell medical cannabis.
ADULT-USE CANNABIS IN ALABAMA
Recreational cannabis in Alabama is currently illegal and possession of even the smallest amount is currently a misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of a year in jail and/or a fine of up to $6,000. In April 2022, the Alabama Democratic Party launched a “Free Weed” website to campaign for legalization of marijuana. The party says arrests for marijuana possession are ruining lives and that statistics show the arrest rate of Black individuals is four times higher than whites in Alabama.
MEDICAL MARIJUANA IN ALABAMA
Medical marijuana became legal in Alabama through the passage of the Darren Wesley ‘Ato’ Hall Compassion Act, otherwise known as Senate bill 46. Patients may access medical cannabis so long as a physician certifies that traditional medications have failed to improve the patient’s condition. There are a number of provisions under the current law that are unnecessarily burdensome on patients, such as the legislation that directs patients to try opioids first, and the prohibition of cannabis raw flower, vaporizer devices, and edibles. Patients will be allowed to purchase capsules, lozenges, oils, suppositories, and topical patches. Under the legislation, patients have to be diagnosed with one of about twenty conditions, including anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, and intractable pain in order to access medical marijuana.
MEDICAL MARIJUANA MARKET PROJECTIONS IN ALABAMA
ALABAMA MARIJUANA NEWS
ALABAMA MARIJUANA LAWS
Alabama is one of only 19 states that still jails its residents for simple possession of cannabis. Under current law, possession of cannabis, even in small amounts for personal use, is a misdemeanor that carries a penalty of up to a year in jail and/or a fine of up to $6,000. During the 2022 Alabama Legislative session, Senator Bobby Singleton introduced SB 160, a bill to decriminalize cannabis. SB 160 aims to remove the threat of jail time for having less than 2 ounces, and reduce the penalty for possession to a fine of $250 for 1st offense, $500 for 2nd offense, and $750 for subsequent offenses. SB 160 was approved by the Alabama Senate committee in February 2022, sending it to the full Senate for consideration.
Before 2021, cannabis was predominantly illegal in the state of Alabama since prohibition in the 1930’s. Many tried, but failed, to legalize cannabis for medical use. Laws such as Carly’s Law and Leni’s Law have been established to allow for CBD oil use for medicinal purposes. In May of 2021, the state passed SB 46 to legalize medical cannabis, however laws surrounding the legislation are still unknown as regulations are currently under development for the new medical program. Under the new legislation, there are about 20 approved conditions, including anxiety, sleeping disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Registered patients are permitted to possess a maximum of 70 daily dosages of medical cannabis at one time. Patients aged 18 or younger are limited to low-THC cannabis products. The bill prohibits raw cannabis, vaping, smoking, and edible products. Individuals who possess, distribute, manufacture, or use medical marijuana without a license can face up to a Class B felony, including potential jail time.