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New Jersey Class 5 Retail License

The Cannabis Shop on the page about Retail license in New Jersey

What does New Jersey’s Class 5 Cannabis Retailer License Allow?

Opening a cannabis dispensary for recreational use in New Jersey requires a Class 5 Retailer License. This license allows the licensee to operate a business that can legally purchase/obtain cannabis products from manufacturers, wholesalers, and other retailers for the purpose of sale to consumers. Retail dispensaries can deliver products to consumers on their own, but they cannot provide a delivery service for other retailers without a Class 6 Delivery License. Class 5 Retail license holders can apply and obtain a Class 6 Delivery license while simultaneously holding a Class 5 license. Retailers can also work with licensed cannabis delivery services to deliver cannabis products to consumers on their behalf. 

New Jersey’s Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC) began receiving Class 5 Retail applications for the premise in which retail operations will be taking place on March 15, 2022. There is no limit to the number of licenses available statewide, and the CRC is accepting applications on a rolling basis. Applications must be submitted through the CRCs application portal.

Opening a dispensary requires a conditional or annual Class 5 License. Conditional License holders must convert their license to an annual license within a 120-day period beginning on the date of license issuance. Applying for a conditional license instead of an annual license can be beneficial for applicants that need more time to complete all regulatory requirements. Conditional licenses are also prioritized over annual licenses when being reviewed by the CRC. Also, Microbusiness applications are prioritized over standard business applications. Further priority in review, scoring, and approval is granted to social equity, diversely-owned, and impact zone businesses.

Getting a Class 5 Retail License is required to operate a legal cannabis dispensary in the State of New Jersey. Working with CannDelta is the best way to ensure your application will be constructed with all the required information and documents, fast-tracking the start of your retail cannabis business!

Requirements for Operating a Cannabis Dispensary

Premises and Operational Requirements

The following list provides basic guidelines of many specific premises and operational requirements. Ensure you’re opening a dispensary that meets all compliance and regulatory standards by working with CannDelta.

  • Cannabis retail premises cannot be located in the same storefront as grocery stores, or other stores that sell food in a retail environment.


  • Cannabis retail premises cannot be located in the same storefront of a store that sells alcoholic beverages.


  • Cannabis cannot be sold anywhere other than at the licensed retail premises.


  • Cannabis retail license holders cannot cultivate, manufacture, or create any type of cannabis product.


  • Cannabis retail license holders cannot sell any products to any individuals under the age of 21. Individuals under 21 cannot enter the premises unless accompanied by an adult.


  • Products sold must be packaged and labeled in accordance with N.J.A.C. 17:30-16.2 and 16.3.


  • Cannabis products can only be sold directly to the customer buying them.


  • A microbusiness Class 5 Retailer can acquire a maximum of 1,000 pounds of usable cannabis or the equivalent in cannabis products or any combination thereof, each month.


  • Customers must provide valid identification upon entry to the retail dispensary.

Retail Sales Restrictions & Limitations

Class 5 Retail dispensaries cannot sell the following to a consumer in a single transaction:

  1. More than one ounce (28.35 grams) of usable cannabis.

  2. More than four milliliters of liquid cannabis concentrate of four grams of solid cannabis concentrate.

  3. Numerous ingestible cannabis products totaling more than 1,000 milligrams of THC.

  4. Vaporized formulation with more than four milliliters of liquid cannabis concentrate.

  5. The equivalent of 28.35 grams (one ounce) of usable cannabis and cannabis products

Record Keeping & Reporting

Class 5 Retail license holders must keep detailed and complete records for their retail operation including all information pertaining to sales and deliveries made to consumers or other cannabis businesses, either by the retailer, or a delivery service. All records must be held for four years, but the Class 5 license holder must submit a report of record to the CRC every year. The information that must be reported includes:

  1. Number of consumers who purchased cannabis products from your retail operation.

  2. Total number of cannabis related transactions and taxes collected.

  3. Any other information the CRC may see fit for administration.

Consumer Education Plans

Class 5 Retail license holders must establish plans to educate consumers about things including, potential side effects of cannabis, strength or potency of cannabis items being sold, safe use techniques, the potential differing impacts of cannabis products dependant on the way in which the product is being used, and what those alternative forms of consumption are. Information about signs and symptoms of substance abuse, tolerance, dependence, and withdrawal also must be readily available at retail outlets. Policies to establish and provide this information must be in place before a retail outlet can open and begin operations. All information must be up to date and available for inspection upon request from the CRC.

Cannabis Product Storage

All cannabis products must be kept within a securely locked indoor space as outlined in N.J.A.C. 17:30-9.12. Access to this area is restricted to anyone except owners, principals, employees, or volunteers of a licensed entity, or to staff members of the management services contractor when conducting official duties.

Delivery to Consumers

Class 5 Retail license holders can work with a Class 6 Delivery license holder to deliver cannabis products to consumers on behalf of the Class 5 licensed retail operation. In other words, cannabis dispensary owners can use licensed cannabis delivery services for home deliveries on their behalf. For more information on cannabis delivery, check out this Class 6 Delivery License page.

What is the Application Process?

The application process takes place through the CRC’s online portal. The process requires detailed and complete answers to a series of complex questions, submission of a variety of attachments, detailed forms and more. CannDelta is America’s #1 cannabis regulatory and scientific consulting firm, specializing in compliant application submissions. Having helped kickstart over 300 cannabis businesses, CannDelta is prepared to get your New Jersey licensing as fast as possible.

General Eligibility Requirements


At least one key individual involved in the license application must have resided in New Jersey for a minimum of two years at the time of application.


Individuals with ownership or decision-making authority listed on the application must be 21 years of age or older.

Regulatory Compliance:

Applicants are required to satisfy all criteria set forth by the CRC and consent to fingerprinting in compliance with state and federal laws.

Criminal Background Checks & Conviction Evaluation:

Owners with controlling interests exceeding five percent or members of groups holding over a 20 percent investment interest must provide written consent for criminal history record background checks. The CRC will conduct these checks and assess any prior convictions. Subsequently, the commission will issue written notification regarding qualification or disqualification.

Working Within Municipal Approval:

Municipal approval is one of the most challenging roadblocks faced during the license application process in New Jersey. Each municipality in New Jersey has either opted in or out of  recreational cannabis use following the CREAMM act (Cannabis Regulatory Enforcement Assistance and Marketplace Modernization Act), which is the state law authorizing personal cannabis use. Each Municipality has different rules, regulations and laws governing the following:

  • What classes of cannabis businesses are allowed within their jurisdiction, as well as the allocation of licenses for each class.

  • The location and operating hours of cannabis businesses, with the exception of licensed delivery services. Each municipality can determine their own unique regulations for cannabis operations, including things such as required distances from religious places of worship, schools, playgrounds, parks, or daycare facilities.

  • Ability to impose local taxes, capped at 2%.

  • Establish additional local approval procedures, ensuring reasonable fees.

  • Implement civil penalties for municipal violations.

  • Provide input to the CRC regarding preferences for license applicants.

Working within your municipality or finding one that’s best suitable for your situation and operation can be very difficult tasks. CannDelta is equipped with all the necessary tools to help you get the cannabis license you want in the best location for you. 


The following information displays dispensary license costs and fees.

Class 5 Standard Cannabis Business Licensing Fees:

Cannabis Application Submission Fee: $200

Cannabis Application Approval Fee: $800

Cannabis Conditional Conversion Submission Fee: $200

Cannabis Conditional Conversion Approval Fee: $800

Licensing Fee: $10,000

Class 5 Microbusiness Cannabis Licensing Fees:

Cannabis Application Submission Fee: $100

Cannabis Application Approval Fee: $400

Cannabis Conditional Conversion Submission Fee: $100

Cannabis Conditional Conversion Approval Fee: $400

Licensing Fee: $1,000

These dispensary license costs and fees are subject to change at the CRC’s discretion. 

Consultation and Professional Services

At CannDelta, our primary objective is to assist entrepreneurs as they navigate the intricate process of establishing a cannabis business in New Jersey. We accomplish this by maintaining a thorough understanding of the New Jersey Licensing process, local municipalities, and regulatory commission.

CannDelta has successfully launched numerous cannabis businesses throughout the United States, including retail dispensaries, cultivation facilities, testing and research facilities, and more.

Here's why Our Expertise is Vital to the Success of Your Business

Proven Track Record

The CannDelta team has a history of driving success for cannabis ventures, offering a unique combination of industry-specific knowledge and practical experience.

Cost and Time Efficiency:

Our services help clients save significant amounts of money and time by guiding them around common pitfalls that could lead to unnecessary expenses and delays.

Expertise in Regulatory Compliance:

Navigating and complying with regulations can be daunting, but our team excels in steering businesses through these complexities to ensure compliance and operational smoothness.

Customized Business Strategies:

At CannDelta, we provide tailored solutions, adapting our guidance and strategies to meet the unique needs of each client, thus ensuring the best possible outcomes.

Risk Management:

 We offer ongoing support to identify and mitigate potential risks, ensuring the long-term prosperity of your cannabis cultivation enterprise.

Why Partner with CannDelta

By choosing CannDelta, you’re entering a partnership with a team deeply committed to your success. Our extensive experience in New Jersey equips us with a distinctive perspective on the evolving dynamics of the NJ cannabis industry.

We go beyond the role of consultants; we serve as strategic partners, dedicated to assisting you at every phase of your business journey. Have questions? Fill out the form below, or call our toll-free number: +1 877-274-6777.

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No! You do not need a medical card to buy cannabis from a recreational dispensary in New Jersey.

Since Cannabis is illegal at a federal level, it can be difficult for dispensary owners to allow cannabis purchases by credit card, however, it is possible. NJ Dispensaries will always sell cannabis by cash transaction, and most will allow debit.

Yes! Cannabis delivery is legal in New Jersey. Consumers ages 21 and older can purchase cannabis products from a licensed retailer and have it delivered to their residence if the retailer offers delivery. New Jersey’s Class 6 license permits delivery of cannabis products. Learn more about Class 6 Delivery licenses with CannDelta.

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