Do You Still Need A Medical Card In California 2021?

Recreational marijuana has been legal in California for several years now. There are tons of dispensaries at your disposal, and you can even grow your own product. So, do you still need a medical card in California in 2021? The answer is yes! There are still tons of benefits to owning a medical marijuana (MMJ) card, so here’s more info about why you should consider getting one (or renewing your existing one).

How many plants can you grow in California legally with a medical card?

One of the main benefits of an MMJ card is the fact that you can grow more product than you can if you’re just a recreational user. If you’re an MMJ patient, you can cultivate and grow up to six mature cannabis plants, 12 immature plants, and/or a greater amount consistent with what you need to treat your medical condition. This can be done in any 100-square-foot section of your property. Recreational users are only permitted to grow a maximum of six plants (regardless of their maturity level).

There’s also more freedom in growing cannabis plants with an MMJ card. You can grow any specific plants or strains that work well to treat your symptoms, which means you’re not dependent on dispensaries to grow the product that you require. Plus, the best part is that growing your own plants can help you keep your costs as low as possible.

MMJRecs - medical marijuana dispensary
Image by Add Weed on Unsplash: There are tons of legal dispensaries at your disposal if you live in California.

How many legal dispensaries are in California?

The state of California is a great place to live if you require MMJ or recreational cannabis. Currently, there are more than 1,440 legal dispensaries for you to take advantage of all around the state. In fact, there’s a dispensary for every 38.7 million people, making California the state with the eighth highest number of legal dispensaries to serve the population.

Is getting a medical card worth it?

Aside from the number of plants you can grow and the large number of dispensaries at your disposal, getting an MMJ card is also a great idea if you live in the Golden State for other reasons. Here are a few more to convince you:

It can save you money

As mentioned above, you can grow your own plants in order to save money you would otherwise spend at dispensaries with higher prices. But there’s also the fact that patients with MMJ cards have sales taxes waived on their products. Although there might be a retail excise tax and a local tax, you’ll still be saving major dough as a cardholder.

It gives you access to better products

MMJ dispensaries often offer a wider variety of products (such as tinctures, edibles, etc.) than the ones you might find at a recreational dispensary. They can also offer higher-grade strains that can be more helpful in treating your physical or emotional symptoms. More potent products likely mean you’ll get more relief from the MMJ form of cannabis. If you decide to grow your own product, you’ll also have better access to the specific plants and strains that will be the most helpful to you.

You’ll have less restrictions

With an MMJ card, you’re permitted to buy marijuana if you’re 18 years of age or older. Without a card, you have to wait until you’re 21 to purchase cannabis. There are also fewer restrictions regarding how much cannabis you can carry at a time. Recreational users are only allowed to carry one ounce of flower (or eight grams of cannabis concentrates) at any one time. Edibles are also restricted at 10mg of individual doses at a time. With an MMJ card, you’re permitted to buy and carry as much marijuana as you need to help treat your medical condition.

You can grow more product

We already noted this above, but it’s still worth paying attention to. Being able to grow as much cannabis as you need is a huge benefit to owning an MMJ card.

man applying for MMJ card online
Image by Free-Photos on Pixabay: You can easily apply for an MMJ card in California by going online.

How easy is it to get a medical card in California?

It’s a pretty simple process to get an MMJ card in 2021. First, you must have a medical condition that can qualify you for a card. This can be anything from glaucoma and anxiety to post-traumatic stress disorder and cancer. You’ll need to get a medical professional to verify that you would benefit from using cannabis products. If you don’t have a doctor who can do this for you, you can always use the services of MMJRecs to connect you with someone who can help.

In order to get your card, you’ll need to submit an application to the county you live in. You will need a copy of the medical recommendation, proof of identity (such as your driver’s license or photo ID), and proof of residency (such as a rental or mortgage statement, utility bill, or DMV vehicle registration). You might have to pay a fee depending on the county you live in, but this amount will never total more than $100. The county will then have 30 days to verify your application and five days to issue your official Medical Marijuana Identification Card (MMIC).

Overall, the process to get an MMJ card is relatively easy and can be helpful in saving you money and giving you access to better products. There’s no better time than 2021 to get your MMJ card in California!

Featured image by Free-Photos on Pixabay

Which California City Has The Best MMJ Dispensaries?

California has long been a mecca for medical marijuana. Some of the earliest efforts to promote the legalization of medicinal cannabis happened in California, particularly San Francisco, in the early ’90s. California became one of the first states to legalize medical marijuana in 1996, and since then the Golden State’s MMJ program has gone from strength to strength.

California also legalized recreational marijuana from January 1st, 2018. While both medical and recreational marijuana are now legal in the state, there are advantages to having a California medical marijuana card, including money savings and not having to worry about shortages.

California medical marijuana patients use a wide array of MMJ products to treat medical conditions including: AIDS, anxiety, anorexia, arthritis, cachexia, cancer, chronic pain, fibromyalgia, glaucoma, migraine, muscle spasms, nausea, and seizures. MMJ can greatly relieve the symptoms of these, as well as many other medical conditions.

Since the legalization of medical marijuana in California, the MMJ industry has been booming in the state. California has a very vibrant MMJ scene and is home to some of the most educational, forward-looking, and well-stocked medical marijuana dispensaries in the world. But which California city has the best MMJ dispensaries? Read on to find out all you need to know about dispensaries in California.

MMJRecs - cannabis products
Image by msqrd2 on Pixabay: Which California city has the best MMJ dispensaries?

How Many MMJ Dispensaries Are There In California?

There are over 500 MMJ dispensaries in California. They are spread throughout the state, with San Francisco, LA, and San Diego being main hubs. California dispensaries take in an estimated $1 to $2 billion in revenue every year.

What MMJ Products Do California Dispensaries Sell?

California medical marijuana dispensaries are some of the most well-stocked in the world. Cali MMJ dispensaries sell a wide array of high-quality MMJ products, such as:

  • Pre-rolls
  • Marijuana flower
  • Cannabis oils
  • Beauty and skincare products
  • Edibles
  • Drinks and teas
  • Capsules
  • Vapes
  • Tinctures

Which City Has The Most Dispensaries In California?

Cathedral City, which sits inland and equidistant between LA and San Diego, has the highest number of medical marijuana dispensaries per capita in California.

What Is The Biggest Dispensary In California?

There are several large dispensaries in California, all of which have very extensive menus. In terms of product range, Grass Roots in San Francisco seems to have the largest menu of MMJ products in California.

Can California Dispensaries Ship Out Of State?

Several California dispensaries operate online and home-deliver MMJ. MMJ home delivery has become especially popular during the COVID pandemic lockdowns. Some California MMJ dispensaries also ship out of state.

Do California Dispensaries Accept Out-Of-State Medical Cards?

California does not have a dedicated MMJ card reciprocity program, but out-of-state visitors are allowed to apply for a California medical marijuana card that they can use while in the state. Once they have a Cali medical card, they can buy MMJ products from California medical marijuana dispensaries.

Which California City Has The Best MMJ Dispensaries?

There are excellent MMJ dispensaries all across California. MMJ patients are divided about which city has the best dispensaries in the state. We think that thanks to its relaxed and laid-back vibe, and the educational ethos and spectacular product range of its dispensaries, San Francisco just pips LA to the title.

MMJRecs - San Francisco
Image by Tim Foster on Unsplash: San Francisco has the best MMJ dispensaries in California.

3 Of The Best Dispensaries In San Francisco

1. Apothecarium

Apothecarium is a mini-chain with multiple locations in San Francisco. With its opulent, stylish interior and excellent range of high-end but reasonably priced MMJ products, Apothecarium rightly deserves its reputation as one of the best MMJ dispensaries in California.

2. Moe Greens

This dispensary has an amazing range of high-end marijuana products, including drinks and edibles. It is famous for its “playground” lounge, where you can relax and sample its unique menu on comfortable green leather booths beneath sparkling chandeliers.

3. Grass Roots

Grass Roots is a local favorite with San Francisco MMJ patients. This atmospheric dispensary opens late and boasts California’s largest range of medical marijuana products.

How Can You Get A California Medical Marijuana Card?

The best way to get a California medical marijuana card is to arrange a telemedicine consultation with a California MMJ doctor through the MMJRecs online clinic. In the consultation, the doctor will examine you to verify your suitability for MMJ treatment. Once your suitability has been verified, you will be emailed a legal medical marijuana physician certification form instantly.

Featured image by Free-Photos on Pixabay

A History of California MMJ Policies (And What the Future Might Hold)

California might just be the leading medical marijuana state in the country. It has consistently been ahead of the curve when it comes to marijuana legislature, both recreational and medical, and its liberal approach to the medicine has no doubt eased many patients’ suffering in the 21 years it’s been legalized. As the number of states who have legalized MMJ tips over the halfway mark (29 and counting), the question is, will California retain its frontrunner position as the leading state in the medical marijuana arena? And what exactly does the future hold at this critical juncture in marijuana law, when the state’s government tries to introduce a recreational rollout against the well-established and successful California MMJ program?

California’s liberal leanings towards marijuana started way back in 1975, when it was among the first states to decriminalize the drug, under the Moscone Act. In 2010, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger added further measures to decriminalization in the form of State Senate Bill 1449, which further reduced the charge of possession on one ounce of cannabis or less, levelling it with an infraction, which constitutes a small fine and no court appearance.

MMJ Recs - Californian Highway

California has always paved the way when it comes to MMJ legislation and progress.

The 1975 decriminalization program paved the way for the California MMJ bill to be passed in 1996. Proposition 215, also known as the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, passed with a narrow 55% majority, making California the first state to legalize medical marijuana for people suffering from cancer, AIDS, migraines glaucoma, arthritis, and other chronic illnesses, demonstrating a remarkable range of qualifying conditions, even back in 1996. Over the years, the wording surrounding this law has been strengthened and clarified, and in 2010, the limit of possession on medical marijuana was lifted after the California Supreme Court ruled in People vs. Kelly. The key wording now lists a number of conditions, followed by the phrase, “and any other condition for which marijuana provides relief.” While other states have faltered in their ascribing of qualifying conditions, California has made the medicine accessible to every single patient who can possibly benefit from it, and in turn has reduced the pressure on doctors, who may worry about breaking the law if their patient’s illness doesn’t adhere to the qualifying conditions.

The passing of Proposition 215  was a watershed moment in the history of medical marijuana, and paved the way for many other states to follow in California’s footsteps. In the intervening 21 years, as a further 28 states have come on board the MMJ train, California has never wavered in its commitment to its program, and has gone to great lengths to implement a successful dispensary rollout across the state. The result is a program which is much more progressive than many other states, including the likes of New York, which implemented a surprisingly regressive MMJ bill in 2014.

Under Proposition 215, patients with a physician’s recommendation, and their primary caregivers, are allowed to cultivate their own strains of MMJ, and as an alternative, SB 420 allows patients to come together in collectives to grow their own medicine. The amount of medical marijuana grown must be in concordance with the size of the collective, and growth that exceeds this number is still liable for prosecution. However, this setup is set to change at the end of 2018, and all collectives must be licenced within the state. This gives patients a large range of options for growing and acquiring their medicine, and makes access easy for any patients that wants (or needs) to avail of the drug.

MMJ Recs - San Francisco Skyline

With changes afoot for both recreational and medical marijuana, what does the future hold for California?

On January 9th 2016, California voted to legalize recreational marijuana. Although they’re not the first state to do this, they have long been proponents and advocates of marijuana in general, so it came as little surprise to most people that they were among the frontrunners to legalize. Many people wondered how the recreational program would line up against the well-established California MMJ program, and indeed, that is the question that dominates conversations about the future of marijuana in the Golden State.

California has a lead-in time of 14 months to roll out their recreational program, with recreational marijuana becoming legal on the 1st January 2018. However, this proved to be too little time to completely overhaul a previously underground and decidedly massive industry; as it stands, it is actually impossible to purchase recreational marijuana anywhere in California, and that looks to be the case for some time.

A medical marijuana card is still the best way to procure the medicine in 2018, and will remain so for the foreseeable future. Just because both forms of marijuana are legal, it doesn’t mean that MMJ will become obsolete; in fact, it’s quite the contrary. The government actually imposed sales tax rebates on California MMJ when they passed the recreational law, renewing their commitment to the long-established MMJ program and providing patients with a cheaper cost for their medicine in the process. Ultimately, California looks set to continue being the shining example of MMJ progressiveness that it has always been.