California Track and Trace Implementation: Metrc Prep

by Jayson Filingeri,

In our first article, Part 1 of 3: What California dispensaries can do to prepare for Track and Trace, we collaborated with RMCC to share how California dispensaries can prepare for Track and Trace. This is important because not preparing for Metrc can result in discrepancies between the physical inventory in your store, inventory in your POS, and inventory in the California track-and-trace system, Metrc. Discrepancies can lead to fines, temporary shutdowns, or the loss of your store license.

We shared actionable advice about:

  1. Learning the basics of Metrc.
  2. Planning and executing audits of your 3-4 inventories.
  3. Assigning a team or individual to ensure the 3 major compliance documents are correctly kept.
  4. How much to budget for a compliance department, if you haven’t already.
  5. How to audit your data and standardize it.
  6. How to properly organize your physical inventory.
  7. How to create a reconcile schedule.
  8. Getting to know your physical and digital inventories.

In part 2 of this 3-article series, we’ll walk you through what it’s like to be a California dispensary migrating to Metrc.


Here’s what track-and-trace implementation will likely look like in California.

As you are aware, dispensaries need to report their sales through the state-mandated system, Metrc.

We’ve seen multiple states delay the implementation of Metrc and delays have already happened in California, but it appears the delays are over because on October 30, 2018, California began issuing permanent, annual licenses.

After you apply for your permanent license, you will receive your license number and Metrc credentials. Your Metrc credentials will likely be delivered by email, but it varies by state how your cannabis license number will be issued. Keep an eye out for an email or letter from the state. Once you have them, you will be required to report your sales to Metrc within a specific time period.

Next, Metrc will inform you of a required training course that you must attend. This training course has previously been delivered via a webinar walk-through format. Please note that this will not be a 1-on-1 training; there will likely be other retailers in attendance, as well as cultivators/vendors.

We’ve heard that a majority of the content is tailored to cultivators, so be aware that some of the content might not be relevant to you as a dispensary employee who uses Metrc.

You, or a select group of employees in your dispensary, will be required to attend, but it’s on YOU to distribute the information to your coworkers, especially if they will be working with Metrc. We recommend taking diligent notes so that you can train your team. We also recommend setting aside training times to train your employees on what you learned.

If you’re a Green Bits user, your Green Bits inventory needs to be migrated to Metrc so you can report your sales automatically. This process does not happen automatically, so reach out to us as soon as you receive your license number and Metrc credentials. You can learn more here. It’s at this time that Green Bits will work with you to ensure everything in the migration goes smoothly. We’ll walk you through what to do in Metrc, and more importantly, what NOT to do in Metrc.

After you follow this process, we’ll work with you to schedule an overnight migration of your inventory so that you don’t have to shut down or miss out on revenue due to having to close during business hours.

We’ll confirm via email once the migration is complete and when you can begin making sales the morning after the migration.

After that, you’ll receive post-migration documents that include best practices so you can successfully run on Green Bits and Metrc!


Additionally, here are some frequently asked questions when it comes to the Metrc implementation process.

– FAQ –

How can my dispensary prepare for Metrc?

In Part 1, we collaborated with RMCC to share how California dispensaries can prepare for Metrc. You can learn what you can do to prepare here.

When will the transition to Metrc start?

The process will begin when you receive both your license number from the state and your username and password from Metrc.

How do I start migrating my inventory to Metrc?

After you receive your license number from the state and your login credentials from Metrc, you can begin migrating your inventory to Metrc.

If you are a Green Bits user, we recommend contacting your Customer Success Manager to see if you qualify for a Managed Migration for:

  • Expert assistance and consulting every step of the way
  • The smoothest migration experience
  • The best way to meet state timelines
  • Post migration coaching to ensure compliance

Additionally, you can begin migrating your inventory by following these 4 steps:

  1. Calculate and purchase package tags.
  2. Receive the tags in your Metrc account.
  3. Create a secret link to your Metrc API key.
  4. Email your migration information to Green Bits.

When does the transition to Metrc end?

The process ends when all of your inventory is migrated to Metrc. This means that all of your existing products and quantities are uploaded to Metrc. This creates your initial inventory in Metrc so you can report to your state agency successfully and compliantly.

If you’re a Green Bits user, the process ends once we complete the overnight migration of your inventory.

How long will it take to transition to Metrc?

The entire migration process can take several weeks, but the interruptions to your business will be minimal.

For example, Green Bits schedules the migration of inventory to happen overnight, so it will not interfere with regular business hours.

Will my dispensary have to shut down during the transition to Metrc?

Typically, no.

If you’re a Green Bits user, we complete the migration overnight, so your regular business hours aren’t affected.

What should I NOT do during the transition to Metrc?

If your Metrc-compliant POS is helping you through the transition to Metrc, we recommend not doing two things:

  1. Do not create items in Metrc or assign package IDs to items in Metrc at any time.
  2. Do not do any audits or adjustments in your POS during the migration.