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Consumer Protection Announces Next Steps in Cannabis Cultivation Licensure Process

Approved Social Equity Cultivators Will Operate in Disproportionately Impacted Areas of the State

(HARTFORD, CT) — The Department of Consumer Protection has invited qualifying Social Equity Applicants to proceed with the next steps in the application review process for Cultivators located in a Disproportionately Impacted Area (DIA).

The Department was notified that 16 applications were approved by the Social Equity Council for satisfactorily meeting the requirements approved by the General Assembly to qualify for the DIA Cultivator license type, which is only available to Social Equity applicants.

“Thank you to the Social Equity Council for their work in taking this important step in the licensure process for cannabis businesses,” said DCP Commissioner Michelle H. Seagull. “DCP will review background checks for those applicants who received a vote of approval from the Council. Provisional licenses will be granted once the background checks are complete and selected applicants have submitted the required information and related fees. Licensees will then be able to move forward with setting up their business and applying for a final license.”

“These important steps mean Connecticut cannabis cultivation will be primarily operated by people from those communities identified as disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs, who qualified as Social Equity Applicants,” said Gov. Ned Lamont. “While there is still a lot of work to be done, we are establishing Connecticut as a leader in addressing the inequities and injustices caused by cannabis prohibition. We are ensuring those communities most harmed have an opportunity to be leaders in this newly regulated industry.”

“I am proud of the work the council has done to get to this point in the process while maintaining a commitment to equity and inclusion, as well as future reinvestment in the communities most harmed by the war on drugs,” said DCP Deputy Commissioner Andréa Comer, who serves as chair of the Social Equity Council. “We are excited for what comes next, and to see these businesses thrive in this new marketplace.”

The 16 applicants and their backers have been asked to submit additional information for the required background check. The background check is conducted by a third-party processing company and DCP’s review of the applications is expected to take several weeks. Once the review is complete, the qualifying applicants will be invited to pay the appropriate fees and move forward with the next phase of licensure, including establishing their business in a DIA for operation.

The applicants who were approved by the Social Equity Council and have been contacted by the Department of Consumer Protection for next steps are listed below.


CT Plant Based Compassionate Care LLC

Insa CT, LLC

Shangri-La Dispensary

Soulstar CT, LLC

Nova Farms Connecticut LLC

The Flower House LLC


The Yard Connecticut LLC

Quinnipiac Valley Growth Partners, LLC

Impact Initiatives LLC


Connecticut Cultivation Solutions, LLC

FRC Holdings LLC

River Growers CT LLC

Connecticut Social Equity, LLC

The Cannabis Garden LLC


The DIA Cultivator License, established by Section 149 of An Act Concerning Responsible and Equitable Regulation of Adult-Use Cannabis, included a one-time application period of three months. Applicants for this license type were not subject to a lottery process, and there was no limit to the number of DIA Cultivator applicants the Social Equity Council could approve.

The state received 41 applications for the DIA Cultivator license. All applications were evaluated by CohnReznick, the independent firm hired by the Social Equity Council to review applications. CohnReznick made recommendations for approval based on the definition for social equity status established by the legislature. The Social Equity Council approved in January the documents required to be submitted by applicants in order to verify social equity status.

Fees paid by the applicants who receive these licenses will be deposited into the Social Equity Innovation account. The fund is intended to provide access to capital for businesses, technical assistance for the start-up and operation of a business, funding for workforce education, and funding for community investments in Disproportionately Impacted Areas.

A map of the Disproportionately Impacted Areas approved by the Social Equity Council last year is available at

Cannabis was approved for adult-use in June 2021. Adult-use cannabis retail sales are anticipated to begin in the state around the end of 2022. For information about Adult-Use Cannabis, visit

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