By / July 11, 2020

Jamaica will facilitate local growers special cultivation permits

The Government of Jamaica wants to make it easier for small farmers to enter the cannabis industry. Previously, it also facilitated the online sale of medical cannabis to licensed retailers.

Late last month, the Cannabis Licensing Authority of Jamaica (CLA) presented its new “special permits” policy and requested consultations with stakeholders. Now, it is looking at how residents can access these business opportunities in the new regulated cannabis industry.

If you want to know more about cannabis, how Jamaica’s government is helping small farmers to enter the cannabis sector, and to find out the latest cannabis news, download the mobile application.

Jamaica aims to create a balanced cannabis industry with the participation of all citizens

Jamaica does not want this new industry to be perceived as being especially reserved for large businessmen, or large corporations. To this end, the Government has created provisional regulations and opens the door for any citizen to enter this industry as a regular resident.

Also, companies operating in the industry must be registered with the Companies Office of Jamaica. These must have a minimum of 51% Jamaican ownership. The preservation of local interests in the industry has been integrated into the new legislative framework.

Local applicants for a permit to produce or handle cannabis will no longer need to be accompanied by an attorney or consultant to apply for the permit. Jamaican residents will be able to access their application directly from the Cannabis Licensing Authority (CLA) with the same advantages without the help of such professionals.

In addition, the CLA will not charge for providing guidance throughout the application process. Client Facilitation Officers will be prepared to assist potential applicants. Furthermore, direct communication with the CLA is recommended in order to have correct and updated information. This will be the way to help make the transition from these special cannabis growing licenses.

Local cannabis growers and small farmers will receive special permits

The Cannabis Licensing Authority will make it easier for small farmers to enter the cannabis industry by issuing 2-year “low-cost” growing permits.

The application fee is $300 for individuals and $500 for companies, businesses, and cooperatives. For small farmers who want to grow cannabis would be 50% lower than current ones, would cost $1,000 and not the current $2,000. The Level 1 grower’s permit authorizes up to 4,000m² of cannabis. Licensing fees are calculated based on the type of license and the level or size of the facility that the applicant has chosen to license.

Moreover, if the applicant for the authorization cannot afford the initial fee, he may delay payment or provide a convenient payment plan, so that the economic issue is not the impediment to access to legal cultivation.

Farmers with the special permit will be allowed to market their cannabis production to another grower or processor who is also approved.

Small producers are happy with the actions taken by the government

Hardley Lewin, president of the Jamaican Licensed Cannabis Association (JLCA), said that it is “a big step forward” and that “we all have to work together.”

Trust, commitment, and a shared vision are essential to building this industry,” he said. “Just as it takes a village to raise a child, so does an entire country to build an industry.”

It appears that the Jamaican Government and institutions are seeking to enable citizens or residents to have effective access to the new cannabis industry. It is a very good initiative to bring the cannabis industry closer to the Jamaican population who have always been so close to the plant.


(Featured image by Yves Alarie on Unsplash)

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