While the cannabis industry can be hugely lucrative, opening a cannabis business is not for the faint of heart.
Cultivators, manufacturers, distributors, and B2B businesses need property in a low-cost area with sparse population. Meanwhile, dispensaries need to be where the people are – but with all of the strict regulations and compliancy issues, they face an ever bigger challenge.
So how do you find the right community for your cannabis business?
The Municipality Decides
Regardless of the legal status of marijuana in your state, at the end of the day, municipalities have the final say in who can open a canna-business in their county, city, town, or village. Then there’s variance among municipalities that have opted in. Some allow all types of operations, while others are more restrictive.
Be sure that your chosen location meets all local zoning ordinances. Have a security plan in place and a proven means against underaged access to your product. And be ready to get a barrage of questions about whether you’re planning to be a member of the community, what your plans are for investing in programs that will benefit it, and how much of your hiring will involve them.
Once all of that’s in place, get familiar with the local government. Establish relationships with town council members, city managers, and the zoning authority. Until they’re assured that your business will be an asset, they have the power to put the kibosh on it.
Who Is the Community?
While you’re setting up plans to be involved in the community as much as possible, it’s crucial you actually know what the fabric of that community is. So you’ll need to do more than pop into the coffee shop and meet some of the locals (though every little bit helps).
Dig in and study general demographic statistics about the population. This includes factors such as gender, racial, socio-economic, and generational make-up. And by now, it should be well understood that a wealthy area with a thriving economy doesn’t supersede areas that have been disproportionately impacted by the war on drugs.
Setting up your business should be based on the principles of social equity that will build value for the entire community where you plan to operate. After all, as your business grows, so too will the community. Especially if you invest in it by offering community-based programs and making charitable contributions.
Bolster Yourself With Appropriate Finances
One thing that many entrepreneurial cannabis business owners don’t consider is how they will sustain the cost of their location until the business is actually licensed and up and running. There can be a considerable lag time.
And since many states requires cannabis businesses to secure real estate before they can obtain any licensing or permits, this is an important consideration. It can be very helpful to enlist the services of a cannabis specific realtor. It’s even better if you can find cannabis realtors with a basis in cannabis law as well. This will expedite the process.
Seeking the Right Community for Your Cannabis Business?
We hope that these tips to finding the right community for your cannabis business will help prepare you for this exciting venture.
And in your preparations, don’t forget the importance of expert cannabis marketing and public relations. Contact us today to find out how our services will be pivotal to your success.