Effective October 5, New York medical cannabis patients age 21 and older may grow up to three mature and three immature cannabis plants under new rules adopted by the state's Cannabis Control Board.

Designated caregivers who care for those under age 21 or those unable to cultivate their own cannabis will be permitted to grow up to six mature (buds showing) or immature plants. Caregivers are permitted to grow for up to four patients.

Only certified patients and designated caregivers registered with the Office of Cannabis Management are able to engage in home grow, and they are not permitted to sell the cannabis they grow.

The cannabis must be grown in a secure location within a private residence, and the grower must take reasonable measures to restrict persons under age 21 years old from accessing the plants (i.e, restricting the cannabis from public view, utilizing a lock or security system, etc.).

New York Rules for Growing Cannabis at home

The new rules provide more options for patients and represent another step in expanding the state's growing cannabis market, which is predicted to ultimately generate billions of dollars and create opportunities for all New Yorkers, particularly those from historically marginalized communities.

Along with rules for home cultivation, the state issued a Medical Home Cultivation Guide, a Medical Cannabis Home Cultivation Fact Sheet and a set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the Personal Home Cultivation of Medical Cannabis Regulations., plus information on how to become a certified patient or a designated caregiver.

New York regulators and lawmakers continue to move quickly issuing guidance, comprehensive regulations and proposed laws surrounding the cannabis industry. The Harris Beach team is monitoring the legal landscape to answer the growing number of questions raised by our clients. We look forward to providing insights and guidance to help clients navigate this rapidly evolving area of law.

For more information, please contact Meaghan T. Feenan, who advises organizations of all structures on developments within the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA), including cultivators and processors, retailers, and distributors. She's a frequent speaker on Cannabis topics and regularly publishes articles about the licensing process and legislative updates.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.