Everything You Need to Know About Cannabis Vending Machines

cannabis vending

Machines dispensing both CBD and THC are popping up around the United States. As CBD is generally more accepted (and not regulated), machines exclusively offering these products are often available in public spaces, such as shopping centers and convenience stores. Vending machines offering THC products are less widely accessible, often being restricted to dispensaries or dispensary-adjacent businesses, such as consumption lounges. Ownership of a strictly medical cannabis vending machine is also permitted in medical-only areas. 

Where Can I Own a Cannabis Vending Machine?

Currently, the states that allow ownership of a cannabis vending license are: 

  • California 
  • Colorado
  • Florida 
  • Massachusetts 
  • Oregon 

Cannabis vending machines have many advantages for the consumer, including privacy, cleanliness, convenience, variety, efficiency and constant availability. Some states are opposed, however, and have specific wording in their laws to prevent cannabis vending machine businesses. A few examples of states that have banned cannabis vending machines are Minnesota, Virginia and Washington state.

Cannabis Vending Advancements in Colorado

Colorado is home to a machine being billed as the first fully automated cannabis kiosk on the market. The Automated Cannabis Experience (ACE) is a large machine that allows customers to order products via touch screen. Items are then directly dispensed and ready for consumption. 

Before access is granted to the machine, proof of age is verified. Also, with consistency in the industry overall, only cash is accepted as payment. The ACE is refrigerated and can hold up to 1,152 products including concentrates, edibles, flower, vape oil cartridges and other items. Upon purchase, ACE grabs, bags, seals and places a purchase sticker on the order before dispensing, just as an average vending machine would. Spokesperson Peter Marcus said, “It’s kind of a fun experience, not going to lie. It’s something that potentially draws new consumers in. It’s not crazy to think that in a few years from now — with changes in regulation — you might see these at Union Station, or like ATM expresses where you swipe cards to get into the ATM.”

Getting a Cannabis Vending License

Interested in obtaining a cannabis vending license? Here are some important things to know:

  • Laws vary greatly regarding what is allowed. Consult with a cannabis attorney before proceeding.
  • Monitoring purchase limits is not automatic; you must determine a mechanism for this.
  • Consider the machine’s maintenance. It is ideal to have a company or several individuals set up for quick repairs as needed.
  • Many machines cannot determine fake ID cards. Therefore, liability for this may fall on the owner.
  • Vending machines can be rented or bought outright, both new and refurbished. It is key to determine beforehand what is best for your business.
  • Cannabis vending machines found with unregulated products will draw negative attention to the industry, especially machine owners as a whole. 

Some of the perks of utilizing a cannabis vending machine license are reduced startup costs, consistent earnings, a wider variety of locations available, no staffing expenses, more security for children, and an overall lack of rules on what can be sold within these machines. They are also a way to inexpensively test new products.

Cannabis as an Exciting Career Path

Excited about the future of cannabis? The market is expected to grow 12.84% through 2029. This compound annual growth rate (CAGR), if proven correct, would mean sales over $62 billion by then. Recreational is aimed to make up $50.29 billion of that value, with medical cannabis representing the remaining $12.43 billion. Here are some other predictions for the industry, which would also benefit the cannabis vending machine business:

  • Legality will continue to increase, including outside the United States.
  • Interest in different product types will expand.
  • As stigma fades, more groups of Americans will add cannabis to their routines.
  • Other automation is quickly gaining popularity, including solvent extraction systems, pre-rolls and grow room lighting.

Many companies have entered the cannabis vending machine business. To become one, begin by establishing a baseline budget and inquire about the cost of a machine and its operation. Some manufacturers, such as ACE, request direct contact before issuing a quote. Finding a direct cannabis vending machine for sale is also possible — pricing seen online include $3,300 to $10,000. QBR adult vending machines featuring Snoop Dogg’s official line offers both leasing and ownership options. Be sure to do your research on vending machine brands, and think closely about the weather conditions it will face. 

Explore Cannabis Vending Machines at CannaCon

Want to talk with someone who owns and/or operates a cannabis vending machine firsthand? Attend a CannaCon event! Upcoming 2024 dates include April 5-6 in Oklahoma City, May 17-18 in Albuquerque, June 20-21 in Rochester, NY, August 16-17 in St. Paul, Minnesota, and October 3-4 in Cleveland.


This article was originally published on Dec 21, 2021, and was updated on Mar. 25, 2024.


  1. Leigh on December 25, 2021 at 5:15 pm

    We need these in Australia.

  2. Jerry skillen on December 30, 2021 at 8:22 am

    How can I receive a machine?

  3. TheGreenJeanie on January 27, 2022 at 2:12 pm

    Yes how would someone go about getting a machine

  4. Denise on February 5, 2022 at 6:40 pm

    You still didn’t give the information. How to sale weed out of a vending machine

  5. Tina on February 17, 2022 at 5:59 pm

    How much does the machine cost

    • Sherri on April 3, 2022 at 3:35 am

      A friend has purchased two CBD vending machines at $20 grand each, product included.

  6. Dwayne Smith on March 8, 2022 at 12:13 am

    In love with this weed vending machine idea. This is the future prospect of cannabis retail business.

  7. Jacob William on March 8, 2022 at 10:24 pm

    Much awaited invention. Cannabis vending machine is going to create a boom in weed retail business.

  8. Steve Austin on April 18, 2022 at 2:03 am

    Eagerly waiting for the day when this cannabis vending machine will become a common method of weed purchase. Thank you for sharing the dream post of a cannabis lover.

  9. Monte Harper on May 13, 2022 at 6:41 am

    I need to know how to start one in Buffalo ny

  10. […] By relying on advancements in digital ID verification tools, the cannabis industry is once again demonstrating their aptitude for innovation and creative problem solving. With the right age verification resources integrated into high-tech unattended retail solutions, cannabis vending machines have already become a reality in many areas around the country.  […]

  11. Bethlyn Thompson on May 26, 2022 at 6:36 am

    Is this real? Noone seems to be getting any answers about price or how to get them?

  12. Top BC Cannabis on September 21, 2022 at 12:30 am

    A cannabis vending machine can be a great way of selling a variety of products in one place.

  13. Orlando on October 17, 2022 at 10:09 am

    What legal documents would I need to start a marijuana vending machine

  14. Rashaad on October 18, 2022 at 11:34 am

    How much does this machine cost, and how does one go about acquiring one of these??

  15. Deborah Hervey on March 13, 2023 at 2:49 pm

    I am interested in buying a cannabis vending machine. I live in Raymore, MO. Where can I get information on the process of owning and placing this type of vending machine?

  16. Joseph Grado on April 21, 2023 at 12:21 pm

    Amazing! Does anyone know if cannabis vending machine license will be legal in any other states like Connecticut or New York?

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