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Business License Requirements for CBD in Florida

In Florida, companies must be registered with the state as well as the county. Florida businesses are also required to hold a company bank account. Business licenses are obtained through the county after submitting the necessary documents. These rules apply to all Florida businesses, even your neighbor’s MLM cosmetics business. CBD is highly regulated in the state of Florida, so business licenses for selling CBD are not as easy to acquire as some other licenses.

In this article, we will talk about CBD license laws in Florida and how to navigate this carefully managed system with help from leading companies in the industry. 

CBD is Growing in Florida

A quick Google search reveals 20 different CBD stores and dispensaries in South Florida alone. The regulatory agencies are still working out the kinks, but CBD business (affectionately termed “cannabis” by some) is growing anyway. 

As early as 2014, the Florida legislature passed SB1030, a bill that created a registry system for patients suffering from cancer, seizures, and certain muscle spasms to possess and use prescription CBD for treatment with a doctor’s consent. 

Then in 2016, the legislature adopted a second amendment which allowed for patients suffering from a variety of other health issues to seek CBD for treatment as well. This expansion of the law helped to normalize CBD use in the state and make it easier for businesses to set up shop in Florida without the same level of opposition experienced prior to 2014.

However, even after the 2014 bill, CBD was still part of a legal gray area for the most part. Businesses were popping up all over Florida, but “non-dispensary” stores weren’t allowed to sell CBD oil. Then, President Trump’s 2018 Farm Bill changed the laws surrounding operating a CBD related business. 

The Farm Bill

The 2018 Farm Bill was very different from the farm bills passed in the past because it addressed the use of cannabis, not only agricultural and nutritional policies. America’s hemp policy has been forever changed by this new legislation. The bill legalized hemp (referred to as cannabis in the bill) in America, but only with restrictions. 

Most importantly, Hemp cannot contain more than 0.3% THC. The bill requires state licensure plans and regulations can only commence with USDA approval. States without a hemp regulatory program will require hemp cultivators to apply for licenses and comply with a federally-run program. This system of shared regulatory programming is similar to options states like Florida had in their previous policies (like SB1030).

The Florida Hemp Program

In the wake of the Farm Bill, Florida has made some changes to the hemp program. These days in Florida business needs to have the right licenses to grow, process, distribute, or sell CBD. 

Starting January 2, 2020, the FDACS began requiring a Hemp Food Establishment Permit. This permit is required for any business that manufactures, processes, packs, holds, prepares, or sells food containing hemp. There are specific steps to follow in order to gain this permit and it’s a good idea to talk with business owners who already have a permit or even hire a lawyer versed in the CBD license laws in your state. 

Industrial Hemp Pilot Projects

As the hemp business continues to grow in Florida, pilot projects are developing with the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. In 2019, the university planted more than 46 different kinds of industrial hemp in locations all over Florida. Later that year, Florida A&M University planted even more hemp in Bartow, Florida. 

These projects show that the public perception of CBD has shifted, making it an ideal time for business owners to get licensed and start selling CBD. However, even with the new positive image, acquiring a license and selling CBD in Florida can be complicated if you’re unfamiliar with the process. 

Reaching out to a reputable company like CBD Flower USA can help you understand the laws in your state and how they apply to you. CBD Flower USA is a family-owned and operated nationwide distributor of CBD products. They have experience navigating the laws and acquiring necessary licenses. Seeking advice from companies that are already established can make it easier to avoid rookie mistakes and speed up the process of acquiring all the necessary licenses.