Regulatory Compliance Management and Consulting
Regulatory Compliance Management and Consulting
The single most daunting task that cannabis businesses face is trying to stay compliant with their State and Municipal marijuana business regulations. Since marihuana is not legal federally, the States which have voted to legalize the use of medical and recreational cannabis are setting their own individual rules and regulations about not only personal use and possession, but also for commercial businesses within their boundaries. The result is a patchwork of regulations, which vary from State to State, with some being stricter and some being less strict, both in terms of compliance and enforcement. Ensuring that you are compliant with the regulations, from the start of your business is most important.
At Hunter Green Consulting, we’re experts at helping ensure that your business is fully compliant. We take a “wholistic” approach to compliance. The moment you walk in the door, we will start putting together a plan to make sure you start compliant and remain compliant. From the planning of your facility, security, HVAC, signage, record-keeping, POS tracking, seed-to-sale tracking system, and every other facet of your business, we can make sure that your decisions will put you in the best position when the State comes for their compliance checks.
Most importantly, we recognize that a cookie-cutter, pre-printed approach is NOT what the State is looking for with regard to regulatory compliance. Our compliance and facility plan will be uniquely tailored and created for your individual property, business, and facility. There are groups who will provide you with a pre-made plan that, literally, only requires that you fill in the blank. Almost all of those business license applications are being denied. Why? Because the State has seen them before, and because they do not show a knowledge of the regulatory mandates for current and future compliance. For the State, they are interested in “show me” not “tell me.”
Given the complexity of the regulations, you need to have a partner who has experience handling the complex regulatory structure of the cannabis industry, and who can help provide you with a compliance plan. Here are some examples: For growers, did you know that many States have a specific list of approved pesticides that you can use on your crops? Did you know that there is a corresponding list of banned pesticides, and that if any of these pesticides are detected in a batch sent for testing, the entire batch must be destroyed? For processors, did you know that many States require that you comply with federal food handling and production protocols as part of your business’s standard operating procedures? Did you know that many of those States require you to tell the State in your compliance plan and/or business plan which protocol you will follow? For Safety Compliance Facilities (Testing Laboratories), did you know that some States specify how, where, when, and what you can sample? Did you know that some States require that the Lab send a tech to the location of the grower or processor and take samples directly from the manufacturing site and that they are not permitted to take in samples provided by the growers or processors for testing at the facility? Did you know that you would be required in those States with such requirements to account for that in your staffing, marketing, and general business plan?
Yes, the regulations are that narrow, and in many States they are even narrower, limiting where, when and how you can market or advertise your product (and in Michigan, you have to put your marketing plan in as part of your application). Assuring the State that you are familiar with the regulations, as well as having an expert by your side to help ensure your compliance, is often the best way to make sure the State has no recourse to find your business as being non-compliant.
In the event that you do have a compliance problem, we can assist with that too. Hunter Green has worked with many clients who came to us after the State came in and demanded they change practices to get into compliance with State regulations. Whether it is advising on the best way to change packaging or a wholesale change to facility layout or employee hiring practices, we have handled all of these problems for clients, and saved them from serious licensing sanctions, or worse, denial of a State or Municipal license based on non-compliance. Two of the founding members are attorneys with strong litigation and regulatory compliance experience. As a result, Hunter Green Consulting Group provides the best solution to your regulatory compliance plans and needs.
Regulatory Compliance Management and Consulting Blog
The cannabis industry is still in its infancy. Not necessarily a “cottage industry” but certainly not nearly as advanced as many agriculturally dependent business marketplaces. However, that infancy has not led to a low-cost entry point when trying plan a commercial marijuana start-up. Equipment is expensive, renovations are often complex and costly because in many cases municipalities limit commercial marijuana businesses to industrial zones, occupied by old factories, which need a lot of work to bring them in line with their new purpose.
Short answer, yes. However, there are plenty of things you can do to help make the process easier. That’s where Hunter Green Consulting Group comes into play. Rather than talking about making things easier, though, this article focuses on some of the hurdles that investors and cannabis business owners face in almost every market where commercial licenses in the marijuana industry are available. Whether you are interested in a cultivation license, a processing and manufacturing license, or a retail sector license, there are some hurdles common to all of these license types that are important to understand.
Adam Grech has a diverse background in finance, manufacturing and consulting. Adam has worked as the head of financial audits for NAFTA for Daimler North America, was the head of technical audits for Consumer’s Energy and worked as an audit specialist and consultant for KPMG.
Aimee is an attorney who is licensed in both Michigan and Massachusetts. Aimee has been a licensed attorney for almost fifteen years. She has an undergraduate degree from Middle Tennessee State University in Mass Communications, and attended law school at both Cleveland-Marshall and Boston University, obtaining her juris doctor in 2003.
Dan is a licensed attorney in the State of Michigan, obtaining his law degree from Wayne State University in 2008. Dan also has two undergraduate degrees from North Carolina State University, a B.A. in Philosophy and a B.A. in English. Dan has worked closely with the marijuana industry since Michigan passed the Medical Marihuana Act in 2008.
John is not average by any means. From his unique outlook on life and Mohawk to his tell it how it is attitude, John has always seen this through a different set of eyes. While most of his colleagues were spending time in class John was gaining real life experience that simply cannot be learned from a book.
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