Florida medical marijuana patients will soon be able to obtain edible cannabis products following an emergency rule change approved by the state’s Department of Health.

The new rules, which take effect immediately, allow for the manufacture, distribution and sale of medical marijuana-infused edibles such as lozenges, gelatins and baked goods to qualifying registered patients. As quoted in the Miami Herald, Christian Bax, Florida’s chief medical marijuana regulator, said the finalized rules have been sent to licensed medical cannabis businesses and so edible products could be on dispensary shelves within a matter of weeks.

The news was welcomed by Ryan Scotson, the co-founder of CannaMD – a network of Florida doctors helping qualifying patients access medical marijuana certification.

“We couldn’t be more excited to finally make this route of administration available to patients. Our board-certified physicians are committed to providing evidence-based medical cannabis treatment to Florida patients, and this is just another opportunity to make this incredible medication available to the patients who truly need it,” Scotson said.

Like in many other medical cannabis states, the rules prohibit edible product marketing that could be appealing to children, such as the use of bright colors or cartoon characters on the packaging. Edibles must also not look too similar to commercially available candies.

The rules were drafted by the Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU) which reports to the Florida Department of Health. OMMU is also responsible for implementing the health department’s rules for medical marijuana.

The move to allow marijuana edibles in Florida’s medical cannabis program has been a long time coming. Marijuana companies have prepared for these rule changes to the point that Florida now boasts state-of-the-art cannabis productions facilities capable of servicing the state’s 400,000 medical marijuana patients. In order to manufacture edibles, these companies must obtain a license that costs around $650.

The Florida Department of Health’s decision to rubber-stamp the rule change comes more than four years after the first medical marijuana dispensary opened its doors and one year after the state legislature voted to allow smokable forms of medical cannabis.

The latest rule change follows a flurry of activity regarding cannabis laws in Florida this year, with at least five marijuana-related bills currently in play in the legislature. That’s not to mention the numerous petition drives that took place this year to put a marijuana legalization question on the November ballot, all of which ultimately failed for the time-being.