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Recreational marijuana is not legal in Hawaii, however, the island currently has a medical marijuana program in place. Within this program, those with medical marijuana cards are able to purchase marijuana if they have qualifying conditions. Additionally, if you want to sell cannabis, you need a cannabis business license in Hawaii to do so. Hawaii recently came out with a plan to legalize marijuana within the state. With this, we can expect more cannabis business opportunities in Hawaii within the near future.

To begin with, more and more states are legalizing adult-use cannabis programs and Hawaii is joining the train. Hawaii recently advanced two marijuana bills. One of the bills is an initiative to legalize and regulate cannabis for adults 21 and older. The other bill focuses on changing the state’s decriminalization laws in order to increase the amount one is able to carry. As of now if you possess more than 3 grams of cannabis you can carry a penalty of 30 days imprisonment and a $1,000 fine.

Adult-Use Cannabis in Hawaii

As mentioned above, Hawaii came out with a plan to legalize an adult-use cannabis market in Hawaii. Within this bill, they establish rules and regulations for the cultivation, sale, and personal use of small amounts of cannabis. Also, cannabis shall be taxed in the same manner as state excise taxes. Additionally, Hawaii shall subject income derived from cannabis sales to state income taxes. Our cannabis consultants in Hawaii at Quantum 9 explain this new potential market.

Personal Adult-Use Cannabis Rules

cannabis business license in hawaii

Cannabis Business License in Hawaii

A cannabis license is required for the operation of a cannabis establishment. So, those with a cannabis license in Hawaii can manufacture, possess, or purchase cannabis accessories to a person who is 21 years of age or older.

License to Operate a Cannabis Retail Store in Hawaii

Here are some of the things you can do with a valid cannabis retail store business license in Hawaii:

  • First, you can possess, display, or transport cannabis or cannabis products
  • Purchase cannabis from a cannabis cultivation facility
  • Purchase cannabis or cannabis products from a cannabis product manufacturing facility
  • Sell cannabis or cannabis products to consumers

License to Operate a Cannabis Cultivation Facility in Hawaii

Additionally, if you have interest in a cannabis cultivation facility in Hawaii, here are some of the acts you are permitted to do:

  • First, you can cultivate, process, package, transport, display, or possess cannabis
  • Deliver or transfer cannabis to a cannabis facility
  • Sell cannabis to a cannabis cultivation facility, product manufacturing facility, retail cannabis store, or you can purchase cannabis from another cannabis cultivation facility

License to Operate a Cannabis Product Manufacturing Facility

If you want a cannabis product manufacturing facility, you are able to:

  • First, you can package, process, transport, manufacture, display, or possess cannabis in Hawaii
  • Deliver or transfer cannabis or cannabis products to a cannabis testing facility
  • Sell cannabis or cannabis products to a retail cannabis store or cannabis product manufacturing facility
  • Lastly, you can purchase cannabis from a cannabis cultivation facility or cannabis products from a cannabis product manufacturing facility

License to Operate a Cannabis Testing Facility in Hawaii

Lastly, with a cannabis testing facility license in Hawaii, you can:

  • Possess, process, repackage, store, transport, display, transfer, or deliver cannabis or cannabis products.

Cannabis Packaging and Advertising Rules in Hawaii

Additionally, there are rules for cannabis packaging and advertising for all cannabis business licenses in Hawaii. For example, cannabis products must contain generic packaging that uses black coloring and no colors, pictures, cartoons or images that may appeal to children. Also, you can not advertise cannabis in the following places:

  • State and private parks
  • Schools
  • Recreational Facilities
  • Public transit
  • Bus stops

License Application Process in Hawaii

Lastly, if you want a cannabis business in Hawaii you have to apply for a license. Within this application, you need a thorough description of a business plan. Our cannabis consultants in Hawaii can help you win a cannabis business license. We help you write business plans for the following:

  • Operating plan (quality control, recall plans, packaging and labeling, inventory control, etc.)
  • Business and financial plan (Business plan, Pro-forma financial statements, bank statements, net worth statements, debt, and equity finance statements, etc.)
  • Safety and security plan (security personnel plans, alarm, and video surveillance, sanitation practices, etc.)
  • Environmental impact plan (water usage, odor, light, noise mitigation, recycling plans, etc.)

Finally, all of these plans are important for you to win a cannabis business license in Hawaii. You can take a look at the bill for an adult-use cannabis market here. Lastly, contact our cannabis business consultant in Hawaii for more information on how we can help you win a license.

Hawaii Cannabis License Expert


Natalie Jachymiak

About Natalie Jachymiak

Natalie is an author and marketing expert who covers topics related to business, policy, and licensing within the cannabis industry. She specializes in content creation, advertising, and public relations. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago majoring in Communications and Marketing.

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