To qualify as a microbusiness, the business must meet the following criteria:
- All of the owners of the business must be current New Jersey residents, and must have resided in New Jersey for the past two consecutive years.
- At least 51% of the owners, directors, officers, and employees must be residents of the municipality where the business will be located (or at least an adjoining municipality).
- The business can have no more than 10 employees.
- The business operating space can be no more than 2,500 square feet (and in the case of cultivators, can have a height of no more than 24 feet).
- There are various limitations on the monthly volume of cannabis that the business can be involved in, which vary somewhat depending on the type of license being applied for (in some cases limits of 1,000 cannabis plants per month, or limits of 1,000 pounds of usable cannabis per month or other cannabis products or resin, or other similar restrictions).
- Conversely, no owner, director, officer, or other person with a financial interest and decision-making authority in any other cannabis business (whether that business is a microbusiness or not) is permitted to have any financial interest in a microbusiness.
These are not insignificant restrictions, but companies that can plan to fit within the regulations may ease their path to obtaining a license to operate a cannabis business. According to the law, at least 25% of all New Jersey cannabis licenses will be granted solely to microbusinesses (and at least 10% of each class of licenses must go to microbusinesses).