September 27, 2023 | Posted in:

New Jersey Activates Application Period for 3 More Cannabis Business Licenses

While recreational cannabis has been legal for nearly three years in New Jersey, some business types are just now able to begin their official license application process.

License Class Types for NJ Cannabis Businesses

The CREAMM Act (New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act) of 2021 established six classes of business licenses for the recreational cannabis market.

  1. Class 1 – Cultivator
  2. Class 2 – Manufacturer
  3. Class 3 – Wholesaler
  4. Class 4 – Distributor
  5. Class 5 – Retailer
  6. Class 6 – Delivery

The license application process opened for New Jersey Cultivators and Manufacturers in December 2021, while Retail followed suit in March 2022. The NJ Cannabis Regulatory Commission (NJ-CRC) announced that, as of September 27, 2023, applications will finally be accepted for the final three classes: Wholesaler, Distributor, and Delivery.

NJ Recreational Cannabis Business License Types

According to the NJ-CRC on

Recreational cannabis businesses may integrate vertically. Vertical integration allows operators to hold any combination of a cultivator license, a manufacturer license, a retailer license, and a delivery service license simultaneously or hold a wholesale and a distributor license simultaneously. All recreational license holders can have only one business in each class. There is no established limit on the number of cannabis business licenses available statewide.

License Type

As with the original classes, entrepreneurs in these three new classes have the option to file for a conditional or an annual license. A conditional license grants the entrepreneur 120 days to build out the business, seek approvals, and convert to an annual license. Applicants also select if they will pursue a standard business or a microbusiness license. Microbusinesses in the New Jersey cannabis market must have no more than 10 employees and have a physical plant that is less than 2,500 square feet. License applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis, until indicated otherwise.

When to Apply for Wholesale, Distribution, or Delivery Licenses

While the application period opens on September 27, the first 90 days are reserved for Social Equity Businesses. Beginning December 27, applications will be accepted from diversely-owned businesses, and the remainder of applications can submit their applications beginning March 27, 2024.

Schedule of Application Start Dates:

  • September 27, 2023 – Social Equity Businesses
  • December 27, 2023 – Diversely-Owned Businesses
  • March 27, 2024 – All Businesses

Read FAQs and more details from the NJ-CRC at


Consult with a Cannabis Tax Expert

Running a cannabis business in the state of New Jersey can be uniquely challenging. It is important to have a trusted and knowledgeable CPA by your side to guide you. Don’t hesitate to contact an Alloy Silverstein advisor today.



Additional Cannabis Tax & Accounting Resources:


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Ren III provides tax, accounting, and advisory services to a broad range of clients, with a specialty for manufacturers, title insurance companies, and professional service providers.
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