Medical Marijuana Edibles In Florida: What Does The New Law Mean?

Florida residents can finally purchase medical marijuana edibles thanks to new legislation in the state. The Florida Office of Medical Marijuana Use announced in August of 2020 that medical marijuana dispensaries can start to sell medical marijuana edibles in the state.

While you may be celebrating, some things need to be understood about this new option. Here’s what the Florida law about medical marijuana says and all the important information you need to know about how to take advantage of this option.

What Are Medical Marijuana Edibles?

Medical marijuana edibles are a line of THC-infused food products, capsules, and lozenges. They produce long-lasting and safe effects for those who utilize medical marijuana to treat medical conditions. They promote euphoria and relaxation and increase the appetite as they also work to help quell anxiety and fatigue.

MMJRecs - THC cookies
Image by Jeff W on Unsplash: Are edibles legal in Florida? They are now!

Florida Medical Marijuana Edibles Law

Medical marijuana has been legal in the state of Florida for several years, but legalizing edibles was delayed. This was done in order for the OMMU to determine product standards that are safe for medical marijuana users.

The edibles sold in the state of Florida must comply with the statutes that help to ensure safe food production. Plus, each edible is required to have the THC symbol placed prominently on its packaging.

A few other regulations required of medical marijuana edibles under the law include:

  • No more than 10 milligrams of THC in a single serving edible
  • No more than 200 milligrams of THC in multiple serving edibles
  • THC potency total must be printed clearly on the label and it may not vary by more than 15% of the potency from the certificate of analysis
  • All edible portions must be stamped with the THC content universal symbol unless the portion size is too small to accommodate it

The law also clarifies that medical marijuana edibles cannot contain color additives that are unnatural. That means only vegetable or fruit colorings may be used.

Medical Marijuana Edibles In Florida: Product Shapes Limited

Out of an abundance of caution for the safety of children, THC-infused edibles must adhere to stringent appearance guidelines. THC gummies can only be in the shape of a diamond, oval, square, parallelogram, rectangle, circle, or triangle. The packaging must also not attract attention, which means no bright, fun packaging can be used. It simply cannot look like candy for children in any way.

Florida MMJ Laws: What Types of Edibles Can Be Purchased in Florida?

Edibles in every category are now regulated in Florida by Standards for Production of Edibles under the OMMU. There are no real surprises here, since companies that produce medical marijuana edibles in Florida can now develop these types of products:

  • Chocolates
  • Lozenges
  • Baked goods
  • Gelatins

The only caveat is that chocolate-based edibles cannot contain fruit, marshmallows, caramel, nuts, nougat, honey, or any other type of specialty filling. It can be formulated only with carob, milk, or dark chocolate.

How Edibles Are Different Than Smoking Medical Marijuana

For many who cannot tolerate smoking cannabis, edibles offer a convenient, safe, and easy way to get a dosage of THC to help manage medical conditions. The main way that eating THC differs from smoking it is that it can take a while to feel the effects of an edible. This is due to the fact that the edible must pass through the digestive system and be absorbed, which simply takes longer than taking in through the lungs or skin.

In general, the effects of edibles last for about five to six hours, but this differs from person to person. How much THC you consume has a direct impact on how long the effects last. That’s why it’s always recommended that, if you’re new to edibles, you start slow and work your way up to a dose that works for you. This allows you to avoid uncomfortable effects that are more intense and last longer than you want.

MMJRecs - MMJ edibles
Image by Margo Amala on Unsplash: Medical marijuana edibles in Florida come in all varieties.

Get Your Florida MMJ Card

To take advantage of the new edibles available in Florida, you need an MMJ card from a qualified and state-certified physician. Aside from having a doctor qualify your medical condition, you must also produce proof of your residency in the state. Then you can enjoy access to many different MMJ products.

Featured image by Herbadea Berlin on Unsplash

7 Reasons Why The MMJ Market In Florida Is Booming During Coronavirus

A lot of businesses have been hurt by the coronavirus pandemic that’s swept across the country. Closures ranging from restaurants and movie theaters to gyms and stadiums have all resulted in business downturn and profit losses.

But there’s one business that has actually grown during the lockdown period. The medical marijuana (MMJ) market in some places in the US has actually expanded considerably. In Florida, for example, the government has been able to fully support the MMJ market by still allowing patients to apply for MMJ cards and keeping MMJ dispensaries up and running.

Here are seven reasons why the MMJ market in Florida is booming during coronavirus.

1. People are spending more time at home

Most states in the US have experienced at least some kind of stay-at-home order or forced quarantine. Millions of people found themselves out of work – either by losing their jobs or being furloughed. That means that the amount of home/leisure time many people have has increased significantly.

More time at home means individuals can use their MMJ products more frequently, particularly if they aren’t going to work. There’s just more time and freedom to use MMJ products while stuck at home.

2. MMJ dispensaries have stayed open

Unlike a lot of other businesses that shut down during lockdown, dispensaries have been deemed “essential businesses”.

This means that being able to buy MMJ in Florida is considered a necessity, and that patients have been able to get access to their MMJ products despite the other local closures.

 

MMJ Recs - MMJ dispensary

Image by Add Weed on Unsplash: MMJ patients still have access to cannabis products in Florida during the pandemic.

3. Dispensaries are delivering

Because MMJ dispensaries have remained open, many locations have offered delivery options or curbside pickup for their customers.

These special services mean that people who rely on their MMJ products for health reasons don’t have to worry about not being able to get what they need during the pandemic.

4. Stimulus checks might make MMJ more affordable

More and more Americans have seen their stimulus checks arriving, which means they might have a little more money to spend on the MMJ products that are essential for their health.

Having a little more income might help with MMJ patients who were worried about going without their cannabis during this stressful time.

5. There’s more anxiety during the pandemic

Most Americans have been experiencing an increase in anxiety because of the uncertain nature of COVID-19 and its effects.

Folks who have MMJ cards are potentially spending more money on MMJ products that can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety and make them feel a little calmer.

6. People are relying more on MMJ for treatments

While it’s still difficult for some people to make it to in-person offices for medical treatment, they can turn to MMJ products instead to treat their symptoms. For example, if a patient typically ventures out to an acupuncturist for help with their chronic pain, they might have needed to stop those appointments while everyone has been on lockdown.

However, they can count on using MMJ products to still treat their pain until they can resume acupuncture sessions in the future. Having MMJ products on hand can mean a reduction in symptoms.

7. There have been studies suggesting that cannabis might treat coronavirus

While the connection between cannabis and coronavirus is still fairly new and uncertain, there has been a study that suggested marijuana might be able to prevent or help treat COVID-19.

Hearing these stories on the news means that people might be purchasing more MMJ products in the hope that they might help with the virus as well.

 

MMJRecs - COVID-19

Image by Pille-Riin Priske on Unsplash: The MMJ market in Florida is thriving during the coronavirus.

How to get MMJ in Florida

Apply for an MMJ card in Florida by going to the state’s website or through the MMJRecs site. A physician will need to determine that you meet the eligibility requirements: that is, being a permanent resident of the state of Florida and having a qualifying medical condition.

Qualifying conditions can include (but are not limited to):

  • ALS
  • Cancer
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Glaucoma
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Additional diagnoses such as anxiety, depression, and migraines might also qualify you for an MMJ card.

After it’s been determined that you have a medical condition that qualifies, the physician will forward their recommendation to the Florida Department of Health. You’ll be required to pay a state-required fee of $75 online and complete an application. You’ll then be approved within 7–21 business days and can purchase your MMJ products right away.

Take advantage of the booming MMJ market in Florida by getting your MMJ card now!

Featured image by Jorge Vasconez on Unsplash