Change in Definition of Mixed Light Cultivation of Cannabis

On July 13, 2018, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) published its proposed regulations in the California Regulatory Notice Register, the first step toward adopting non-emergency regulations. The publication begins the formal rulemaking process and marks the opening of the 45-day public comment period.
 
An important change in the proposed rules is the definition of mixed light. Under the current emergency regulations, adopted in December of 2017 and readopted June 2018, the definition of mixed light cultivation is:
 “(s) ‘Mixed-light cultivation’ means the cultivation of mature cannabis in a greenhouse, hoop-house, glasshouse, conservatory, hothouse, or other similar structure using light deprivation and/or one of the artificial lighting models described below:
  1. ‘Mixed-light Tier 1’ the use of artificial light at a rate of six watts per square foot or less;
  2. ‘Mixed-light Tier 2’ the use of artificial light at a rate above six and below or equal to twenty-five watts per square foot.”
This definition implies that if you are (1) cultivating in any structure; and (2) are using light deprivation techniques, your cultivation will be considered mixed light cultivation. The conflict between CDFA’s definition of mixed light, which includes “light deprivation,” and Humboldt County’s definition of mixed light cultivation, which excludes “light deprivation,” was the topic of a recent blog post .
 
CDFA’s proposed regulatory text for the definition of “mixed-light” is:
 
“(t) ‘Mixed-light cultivation’ means the cultivation of mature cannabis in a greenhouse, hoop-house, glasshouse, conservatory, hothouse, or other similar structure using a combination of:
  1. Natural light and light deprivation and one of the artificial lighting models listed below:
    1. ‘Mixed-light Tier 1’ without the use of artificial light or the use of artificial light at a rate above zero, but no more than six watts per square foot.
    2. ‘Mixed-light Tier 2’ the use of artificial light at a rate above six and below or equal to twenty-five watts per square foot; or
  2. Natural light and one of the artificial lighting models listed below:
    1. ‘Mixed-light Tier 1’ the use of artificial light at a rate above zero, but no more than six watts per square foot;
    2. ‘Mixed-light Tier 2’ the use of artificial light at a rate above six and below or equal to twenty-five watts per square foot.” (Emphasis added).
Under the proposed regulatory text definition of “mixed-light,” for a growing operation to be considered mixed light it must necessarily include the use of artificial lighting, whereas the emergency regulation text included either light deprivation or the use of artificial lighting within the definition of “mixed light.” This proposed change brings CDFA’s definition of “mixed light” in line with the County’s definition of mixed light which encompasses only those operations that use artificial lighting.
 
Be aware of this change when filling out your state license applications as the difference between mixed light and outdoor cannabis application fees vary.

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