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California Cannabis Distribution


The Bureau of Cannabis Control licenses California cannabis distributors. Cannabis distribution licenses can be broken up into two distinct categories: distribution (Type 11) and distribution - transport only (Type 13.)


Type 11 cannabis distributors have a variety of responsibilities. First, a license holder is required to manage the transportation of cannabis from the cultivator or manufacturer to the distribution facility. Second, a license holder must collect the cultivation tax from either the cultivator or manufacturer. Third, the distributor is required to have the cannabis products in its possession testing by a duly licensed testing laboratory. Finally, a distributor is the only license holder permitted to transport cannabis to a dispensary or delivery service.


The job of a Type 13 license holder is considerably more simple. A Type 13 license holder is only permitted to move cannabis from one license holder to another. A license holder may also deliver cash from the buyer to the seller.


Distributors are a key cog in the  California cannabis market. Without distributors, taxes wouldn’t be paid to the state, products wouldn’t be tested, and cannabis would not be able to leave a facility. For cultivators and manufacturers, an experienced and well connected distributor is key to getting their market on retail shelves. Conversely, a poor distributor may ensure that even the best products never end up on retail shelves.

Please contact CLS for more information regarding cannabis licensing, and how to get started with the application process.

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