Florida’s CBD Program Cleared For Takeoff

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Florida’s long-awaited CBD program could move into the fast lane now now that a Tallahassee judge has sided with the state and ruled that officials can move forward with licensing businesses.

Barring any remaining legal setbacks, Florida can begin accepting applications for business permits within three weeks and license five companies to grow, process and distribute low-THC, high-CBD marijuana as early as this summer, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

A nursery had previously sued Florida, alleging that the rules were written to favor larger, politically connected growers. Administrative Hearings Judge David Watkins, however, sided with the state.

Implementation of the law – approved by state lawmakers a year ago – has been delayed by repeated legal problems and multiple attempts to rewrite regulations.

Licenses will be restricted to horticultural growers that have been in business for at least 30 years and have the capacity for a minimum of 400,000 plants.

Companies will have just 21 days to file their applications after the state begins the process, and then officials will have 60 days to choose the winners. There will also be a geographic distribution of the licenses, with one each given out in southeast, southwest, central, northwest and northeast Florida.