cannabis trade samples

Trade samples are a vital part of the cannabis industry and aid in providing a higher quality of product to consumers. The recently released adult-use emergency rules from the Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) contain information on how licensed companies can provide such samples to other licensed companies and its own employees. Rule 53 of the emergency rules allows for cannabis trade samples. Similarly, Rule 54 establishes internal product testing samples for growers, processors, retailers or microbusinesses. 

Lastly, Rule 55 allows for certain product to be designated for “research & development” purposes. Below are the regulations and methods established for sampling within the rules: 

What are trade samples in the cannabis industry? 

  • A grower or processor may provide samples of marijuana or marijuana products to a processor or retailer. 
  • The transfer of trade samples does not require use of a secure transporter if it does not exceed 15 ounces of marijuana or 60 grams of marijuana concentrate. 
  • Samples may not be consumed on premise unless it is also a licensed designated consumption establishment. 
  • Trade samples may not be sold and must be labeled as follows: “TRADE SAMPLE NOT FOR RESALE.” 
  • All samples must be recorded in METRC (Marijuana Enforcement Tracking Reporting & Compliance). 
  • Trade samples must be tested prior to being transferred to another licensed facility. 
  • Facilities may provide up to 2.5 ounces or less of marijuana and 15 grams of marijuana as trade samples within a 30-day period. 
  • A facility in receipt of a trade sample may distribute the sample product to its employees to determine if the product is to be purchased. 

What are Internal Product Samples in the cannabis industry?

  • Internal product sampling must be conducted off premise unless a designated consumption establishment. 
  • Internal product samples may not be transferred/sold to another licensed facility or consumer. 
  • Internal product samples must be recorded in METRC (Marijuana Enforcement Tracking Reporting & Compliance).
  • A grower may provide a total of 2.5 ounces or less for internal product sampling to their employees within a 30-day period. 
  • A processor may provide a total of 5 grams of marijuana concentrate to its employees for internal product sampling within a 30-day period. 

Can cannabusinesses participate in research and development? 

  • A grower or processor may engage in research or development, no other marijuana establishment may do so. 
  • A grower may designate up to 50 marijuana plans for research and development. These plants will count toward the authorized total amount of plants allowed and must be recorded in METRC (Marijuana Enforcement Tracking Reporting & Compliance).
  • A processor can designate up to 5 grams of marijuana concentrate for research and development within a 30-day period. Any concentrates allocated for research and development must be tracked in METRC (Marijuana Enforcement Tracking Reporting & Compliance).
  • Research and development inventory may be transferred to employees for consumption. The inventory must be tested in compliance with Rules 42 and 43 prior to transfer. 
  • Research and development inventory may not be transferred or sold to a retailer until test results indicate a passed test. 
  • Pursuant to Rule 37, any research and development inventory not properly transferred to an employee must be destroyed. 
  • Inventory dedicated to research and development may not be consumed or used on premises of a licensed marijuana grower or processor. 
  • Research and development inventory may not be sold or transferred to another marijuana facility. 

A number of other states already have sampling regulations in place, including Oregon and Colorado.  In addition to allowing for better consumer products, sampling is an important part of establishing industry standards for both medical and adult-use products. Contact our team of experienced cannabis attorneys today to ensure your compliance and your business’ future. 

Kali Rose (8 Posts)

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