Payment Processing

Cannabis Industry Struggles with Reliable Payment Processing


The cannabis industry has grown rapidly across the United States in response to the expansion of legalization. The industry’s growth has provided over 240,000 jobs in the US alone and the industry is expected to grow by USD 30 billion by 2025.

Business owners are taking advantage of the legalization and momentum of cannabis use; however, despite the significant improvements, the cannabis industry is faced with many challenges. Farms, dispensaries, and retailers are limited to operating only through cash transactions due to federal restrictions.

In today’s age of instant everything and cashless transactions, cannabis businesses still struggle to find reliable banks for payment processing services. Federal laws constrain banks and financial institutions from taking money from the cannabis industry, leaving businesses no option but to solely transact through cash.

Since cannabis products are still illegal at the federal level, Americans and credit card companies are still prohibited from making and accepting payments from cannabis and related products. With a reliable high-risk merchant account provider, though, you can offer customers alternative payment options as well.

Cannabis Payment Options

Although credit card payments are not yet an option, there are other payment options cannabis companies can utilize.


Cash is the most widely used payment method. The transaction is direct which means you get the sales money in an instant. However, this simplest form of payment can also pose risks to your business. Storing a large sum of money invites serious security risks.


Customers who still prefer the convenience of cashless transactions can purchase cannabis products using debit cards. Although customers are only able to use the funds available to them, this option is still faster and more convenient.

BANK TRANSFERS OR ACH (Automated Clearing House)

ACH payment processing is another convenient option allowing customers to transfer payments from their bank account directly to another account (same or different bank). For cannabis businesses that have yet to accept debit card payments, ACH payment processing is convenient, safe, and reliable.


Although cryptocurrency is already gaining popularity, this payment option is not yet common and would take a while before it receives wide-scale utilization.

Cannabis companies may consider using cryptocurrency as a payment option; however, customers may not be that comfortable dealing with scalability issues, security risks, and regulations.

With the payment options presented, it is best for dispensaries and retailers to not stick with one payment option alone. Your business should not depend only on debit cards payment, bank transfer, ACH, or cryptocurrency individually and instead should use all channels to accommodate customers’ needs.

That way, you are not only meeting customers’ requirements but hitting sales at the same time to help your business grow and expand.

Although the cannabis industry is growing with legalization and sales rapidly expanding globally, the industry still faces major setbacks hindering its complete growth. But these challenges are part of the progress that hopefully will be addressed in the future.

Final Say

If you are looking for a high-risk merchant provider or are interested in the world of high-risk businesses and payment processing, it’s important to partner with a company that will meet your business needs. The payment processing company will take care of the messy work while you focus on taking your business towards success.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *