Frequently Asked Questions Cannabinoid Hemp Program

General Questions

1. What is Cannabinoid Hemp?

Cannabinoid hemp is any product processed or derived from hemp, that is used for human consumption including for topical application for its cannabinoid content, that does not contain more than 0.3% THC. Cannabidiol or "CBD" products are an example of cannabinoid hemp products and can come in a variety of different forms including but not limited to tinctures (CBD oil), pills, capsules, balms, lotions and food or beverage products. Other hemp-derived products such as hemp seeds or hemp seed oil, which do not contain cannabinoids, are regulated as foods and not under the scope of this program.

2. Is Hemp the same as Marijuana?

Hemp and Marijuana are different classifications of the Cannabis plant. "Hemp" is used to classify varieties of Cannabis that contain 0.3% or less THC content (by dry weight). "Marijuana" is used to classify varieties of Cannabis that contain more than 0.3% THC (by dry weight) and is known for its psychoactive effects (including a feeling of being high).

3. What are cannabinoids?

Cannabinoids are natural compounds found in the cannabis plant that have different effects. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are the most common, but there are more than 100 cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. THC is known for its psychoactive effects (including a feeling of being high). CBD does not produce a feeling of being high and has anecdotally been found to have a variety of wellness benefits.

4. How do I get a license to process or sell cannabinoid hemp?

The Department of Health is now accepting applications for Cannabinoid Hemp Retail Licenses and Distributor Permits. Click HERE to apply for a Retail License or Distributor Permit. Click HERE to apply for a Process License.

5. Trouble creating a New York Business Express (NYBE) account or logging into your existing account on the New York Business Express Website?

Call the NYBE Contact Center at (518)-485-5000, Monday - Friday 8:30 am - 4:30 pm for assistance. When you call the help desk you will hear a list of options, you will want to "Press 4" for the Cannabinoid Hemp Program and then “Press 1” for assistance with NYBE profile login.

6. Is the Cannabinoid Hemp Program transferring to the new Office of Cannabis Management?

The transition process for the Cannabinoid Hemp Program to the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) will occur within six months of the Cannabis Control Board being fully appointed. Every effort will be made to ensure the transition from the Department of Health to the OCM for cannabinoid hemp permit holders and licensees will be as seamless as possible. Due to the six-month transition process, no immediate changes are being made to the current Cannabinoid Hemp Program. You can find more information about this topic here.

7. Will a cannabinoid hemp license allow me to process or sell recreational or adult-use marijuana?

No. This is not a license to sell marijuana. The cannabinoid hemp program only regulates products derived from hemp. If you are interested in the future adult-use marijuana program please visit cannabis.ny.gov or e-mail info@cannabis.ny.gov for more information.

8. Does the Cannabinoid Hemp Program permit the sale of cannabinoid hemp flower products?

The proposed regulations permit the sale of cannabinoid hemp flower; however, cannabinoid hemp flower products may not be labeled or advertised for the purposes of smoking or in the form of a joint, cigarette, cigar or pre-roll. Cannabinoid hemp flower products that are not marketed for smoking may be sold by any cannabinoid hemp retail licensee pursuant to the proposed regulations.

9. Are Delta-8 THC products allowed in the Cannabinoid Hemp Program?

No. Delta-8 THC products are not permitted in the New York State Cannabinoid Hemp Program. Retailers are not permitted to sell Delta-8 THC products and processors are not permitted to manufacture them. The Department has issued proposed regulations clarifying this prohibition which can be viewed here: Proposed Regulations.

Cannabinoid Hemp Processor Licenses

1. What is the difference between the two Cannabinoid Processor Licenses: "Extracting and Manufacturing" and "Manufacturing Only"?

The "Extracting and Manufacturing" license type allows a processor to extract or isolate cannabinoids from hemp to create crude oil, distillate, isolate or other intermediary product to be further refined or manufactured into a final cannabinoid hemp product. This license also permits the manufacturing of final cannabinoid hemp products. The "Manufacturing Only" license type allows a processor to purchase crude oil, distillate, isolate or other intermediary product to manufacture final cannabinoid hemp products.

2. How much does a Cannabinoid Processor License cost?

The Cannabinoid Hemp Processors Extracting and Manufacturing License costs $1,000 for the application fee and $3,500 for the license fee. The Cannabinoid Hemp Processor Manufacturing Only License costs $500 for the application fee and $1,000 for the license fee. Both licenses are valid for two years from the date of issuance.

3. Is there a paper form of the application available?

No, only online applications are available at this time. Please click HERE to apply.

4. How long is the Cannabinoid Hemp Processor License valid for?

Cannabinoid Hemp Processor licenses are valid for two years from the date of issuance of the license.

5. Why do Cannabinoid Hemp Processors need a Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) Audit?

Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) is a quality control system for ensuring that products are consistently produced and controlled in accordance with current federal regulations 21 CFR Parts 111 or 117 established by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). You can find more information regarding this requirement, here.

Cannabinoid Hemp Retail Licenses and Distributor Permits

1. What is the difference between a Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License and Distributor Permit?

A Cannabinoid Hemp Retailer is a business, including an internet retailer, that sells cannabinoid hemp products in their final form, to consumers to be used for human consumption or topical application. A Cannabinoid Hemp Distributor is a business, selling or distributing cannabinoid hemp products manufactured outside of New York State at wholesale to licensed Cannabinoid Hemp Retailers. If applicable, a business may need both a Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License and Distributor Permit.

2. How much does a Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License cost?

The Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License costs $300 per retail location and is valid for a year from the date of issuance.

3. How much does a Cannabinoid Hemp Distributor Permit cost?

The Cannabinoid Hemp Distributor Permit costs $300 per distributing location and is valid for a year from the date of issuance.

4. If I sell cannabinoid hemp products at multiple retail locations, do I need a license for each location?

Yes, each location offering cannabinoid hemp products for sale is required to obtain a license.

5. Do I need a Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License if I am only selling cannabinoid hemp products online?

Yes, whether in-state or out-of-state, retailers offering cannabinoid hemp products for sale to New York State consumers must obtain a Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License. This ensures that cannabinoid hemp products sold in New York State meet the quality assurance and consumer protection standards required by New York State, regardless of where they are produced.

6. Is there a paper form of the application available?

No, only online applications are available at this time. Please click HERE to apply.

7. How long is the Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License valid for?

Cannabinoid Hemp Retail licenses are valid for one year from the date of issuance of the license.

8. How long is the Cannabinoid Hemp Distributor Permit valid for?

Cannabinoid Hemp Distributor Permits are valid for one year from the date of issuance of the permit.

9. If I have a Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License, do I also need a Distributor Permit?

It depends. If you sell cannabinoid hemp products to consumers in New York State and sell cannabinoid hemp products manufactured out-of-state to cannabinoid hemp retailers in New York State, you would need both a Cannabinoid Hemp Retail License and Distributor Permit.

10. Why is the Distributor Permit only required for products manufactured outside of New York?

The Distributor Permit helps control the quality of cannabinoid hemp products produced out-of-state and sold in New York State. Distributor permittees will be responsible for ensuring that all out-of-state cannabinoid hemp products meet the requirements of the Cannabinoid Hemp Program.

11. If the regulations are not effective yet, are there any restrictions on the type of cannabinoid hemp products I can sell?

Yes. All Cannabinoid Hemp Retail and Distributor Permit applicants are encouraged to read the proposed regulations, available here: Proposed Regulations. The proposed regulatory requirements will not go into effect until the regulations are officially adopted and published in the New York State Register. Upon adoption Cannabinoid Hemp Retail Licensees and Distributor Permit holders must adhere to all of the rules and regulations of the Cannabinoid Hemp Program. The Department will notify all applicants when the regulations are effective.

Questions?