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How to Get Set Up for Metrc Compliance in 2024

June 25, 2024
January 25, 2024
| Updated
June 25, 2024

One of the hardest parts about getting set up on Metrc is figuring out what you need to do in the first place! Rather than wading through a sea of dated articles and broken links, we’ve put together this simple, no-bs guide that walks you through each step.

In the 24 states that use it, Metrc compliance is mandatory and will take up a lot of your time every day (unless you use Distru, anyway!). So, getting it right the first time can save you a lot of potential frustration and fines down the track.

Let’s run through the steps you need to get set up for Metrc compliance.

Step 1: Get your state license

There’s no way to even set up a Metrc account until you have your state license in hand, so this needs to be step 1. Often, the approval process will take months so if you haven’t submitted an application yet, get onto that right now.

Once you receive that license, you’ll get an email with a link and instructions to set up your Metrc account. 

Step 2: Sign up for a Metrc account

Obviously, the next step is to follow the email instructions and create your new Metrc account. Once that’s done, you’ll be able to log in but can’t really do anything just yet.

Step 3: Complete your Metrc training

Metrc training is basic but mandatory. It’s a short series of YouTube clips that teach you the fundamentals of how Metrc works and where you’ll find some of the most common functionality. Note that you’ll need to complete steps 1 and 2 above before you can begin this mandatory training.

See the links below for Metrc training info. Click on your state, then scroll down until you see the ‘new business training’ link. This is where you can log in and begin your mandatory training. Just below that, you’ll also find links to additional training resources for your reference.

Think of it like a very short introduction to a complex application. Sadly, the real learning has to be done on the job–this is where hiring someone with Metrc experience can be a life saver.

Metrc Compliance software

Step 4: Order your Metrc tags ASAP

Once you’ve finished the training, you can start ordering your cannabis package and plant tags. These tags are what will be used to identify and track products from initial seed to final retail sale. 

These tags take about 5 - 7 days to arrive. Until you’ve physically received them, you’re going to get held up anytime you need to repackage inventory or replace a tag, so you’ll want to get this one done quickly!

Step 5: ‘Receive’ your tags in Metrc and prep for Day 1

Once those tags arrive, you’ve finally reached the day where you can start functioning as a Metrc-compliant operator.

You’ll need to jump into Metrc and ‘receive’ those new tags, officially accepting custody of them. Then, as you sell the product these are attached to, you’ll use Metrc to transfer those tags to the buyer (unless you’re a dispensary. Then the chain stops with you.)

You can do this by logging into your Metrc account, navigating to the top navigation bar, then clicking Admin > Tag Orders. Select the order you have physically received, then click ‘Receive’ on the right side of the screen.

Step 6: Set up the rest of your account

The final step before you can start trading is to get the rest of your Metrc account up and running. You’ll need to manually enter all the products and ingredients you plan to buy and sell, including:

  • Item names
  • Categories — options will vary by state 
  • Unit of measure
  • Weight
  • Ingredients — if entering edibles, the required information varies by state

Now that you’re all set up, you’re free to start buying and selling products, making sure you accurately transfer and receive the associated tags.

Step 7: Protect your sanity and profits with a cannabis ERP (optional)

Now that you’re up and running, it’s your responsibility to remain Metrc compliant every day. As you’ll quickly start to see, working directly in the Metrc interface is cumbersome and time consuming, and enough to test anyone’s patience. 

There’s nothing quite like preparing a large order of a few hundred items and manually entering each one  in Metrc, only for it to crash (again) and make you start over. Sooner or later, you will yell at your screen and wonder how Metrc is the platform states keep choosing.

At that point, you’ll be stoked to learn that Distru’s ERP solves all of those problems and simplifies your entire workflow. Rather than jumping around between different applications and spreadsheets trying to keep everything in order, Distru pulls everything into a single, intuitive interface.

Better yet, we’re the only cannabis ERP that offers a live 2-way sync with Metrc. What that means is when you process an order in Distru, we automatically handle the Metrc compliance tasks for you in the background. 

Even when Metrc goes offline, we queue up those changes and automatically push them through once their services are available again. Not only do you completely skip having to manually enter every item in Metrc, you won’t even notice when it crashes!

If you’re interested in learning more, you can read more about what a cannabis ERP actually means for your brand. Make sure you check out our case studies with Cheef, Drops, Eureka and Argent to see how they’re saving 150 - 200 hours per month just by using Distru.


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