"They Did What?"

Cannabis Vending Machines: Approved in Colorado Dispensaries

On December 28, 2020, the Colorado Department of Revenue specialized business group that supports Cannabis released a Compliance Tip on Automated Dispensing Machines/Vending Machines for Regulated Marijuana.

“ If a licensed retail marijuana store uses an automatic dispensing machine that contains retail marijuana and retail marijuana products, it must comply with the regulations promulgated by the state licensing authority for its use.”

It is all about being compliant and documentation if you will have a vending machine in your operations. So if you are thinking about it, read the compliance tips.

Here are some highlights:

  • Check Local Regulations: find out from your local cannabis regulatory body if they will allow vending machines.
  • Premises Diagram: The floor plan/diagram of the licensed dispensary should accurately reflect the machine’s location, which must be in the Restricted Access Area.
  • Sales Quantity, ID, and Age Requirements: The machine must have the intelligence and technology to monitor these critical attributes tied to a customer or patient.
  • Security: It has to be considered. You don’t want to have a machine that can be easily carted away.
  • Standard Operating Procedures: This is one of our favorite areas. You need to document the use, maintenance, and access to the machine.
  • Inventory Tracking and Storage: The machine has to interface with METRC (CO seed to sale tracking platform) either directly or through your POS.
  • Covid Protocols: It wouldn’t be a relevant post in 2020 if we did not mention Covid. This is a great alternative for customers and patients to get their cannabis but think about cleaning protocols.
  • Ready, Set, Go: You decided to have a vending machine and have written the SOP, and completed all other required protocols. Now what? The MED encourages any Licensees using this technology to contact the appropriate regional MED office to notify the MED of such use.

So are there vending machine companies that are supporting the Cannabis industry? Yes, do your homework and understand if they are familiar with the Colorado Market. Here is a company, Social Vend, which has a history in the vending machine market.

Meet Buddy, the AI cannabis vending machine.

They definetly have a history with other clients.

About the Author

Tim Gunther is CEO and co-founder of ILoveCompliance.biz. He is passionate about protecting cannabis and hemp licensees in their operations. Tim believes it comes down to common sense and managing regulations and compliance in an educational and accountable way. Tim also is a member of the NCIA and an active member in creating national cannabis standards with ASTM D.37 Cannabis Committee. If you have a compliance or regulatory topic, you want to learn more on, send an email to info@ilovecompliance.biz, and we may write a post on it.

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