Missouri Medical Cannabis Faces Delays Due to Testing

Another delay has set Missouri’s medical marijuana program back again.
Missouri Medical Cannabis Faces Delays Due to Testing

Missouri medical cannabis is being delayed yet again and is still not available for purchase, still because of a lack of testing sites for cannabis as well as delays caused by COVID-19. 

Many cannabis patients in Missouri who have been eagerly awaiting legalization are frustrated at the lack of progress in the state. A few dispensaries are open, and a few growers are geared up and ready to go, but there are still no resting facilities at all, so none of the cannabis can be legally sold. 

“Everyone thought this would be progressed along a little bit faster. We’ve got a little over 60,000 patients that are waiting for guys like me to get up and growing,” John Mueller, CEO of Missouri dispensary Greenlight, said.

The Status of MMJ in MO

Part of the setback has been COVID-19, as shutdowns, cutbacks, and timeline changes have not helped to get testing facilities up and running, but the fact remains that the state is running out of time to get things going for 2021. 

“It slowed the industry down. Your planning and zoning, your city council, everyone across the state kind of took a pause,” Mueller said.

Greenlight is currently sitting on a site that is equipped for growing 18,000 cannabis plants. The only thing they are now waiting for is approval from the state to actually plant and grow their crop, and for that, testing facilities need to be available. 

The state has resorted to renewing medical cannabis cards for folks automatically, as none of those who were approved for a medical cannabis card currently have access to buying legal product. 

At this point, many dispensaries are ready to be up and running, as well as selling product, but they are still waiting on testing and final inspection. It seems as though things are going to be delayed until final testing is actually an option. 

“We were very clear that dispensaries wouldn’t be open to buy it, retail wise, until this year until mid year. Many may not have understood that,” said Lyndall Fraker, state director for the DHSS section for Medical Marijuana. “We know it’s going to get very busy.” 

Four dispensaries have been approved so far in the state, as they have passed final inspection, but they are only able to sell products like CBD oil until medical cannabis can actually be properly tested. At this time, three of the 60 cultivators who were awarded licenses have been approved to begin growing, and a crop normally takes 90 days, so there is quite a lag in getting cannabis to suppliers. 

“We’re going to run out of product immediately if a big facility like this doesn’t get up and running, so we are kind of the tip of the sword,” Mueller said.

The hope is to have a testing facility up and operational by the end of September, but it’s not clear if that will happen, and even then, there will only be one facility to test cannabis. Missouri must catch up on the testing front before the medical cannabis industry will become viable.

  1. I’m so tired of the excuses and justifications for a lot of delays that shouldn’t have been a problem to begin with. And this whole thing starts and finishes at the very top. From governor Parsons and his shady buddy Tilley to the director of the program mr Fraker. Fraker especially is totally incompetent and as unprofessional as anyone that they could have hired to do the job. He had absolutely no background that indicate him being a good choice for the position and he has continually proven over and over how he is in way over his head when it comes to getting this unprecedented and brand new program up and running meanwhile the people of Missouri who voted this into law has had to wait and pay as the top management keeps dropping the ball right when you start to think that finally something is about to start happening just to learn that another snag that they should have anticipated pops up to slow or stop it once again. There are so many appeals waiting to be heard in court from people who invested thousands & thousands of dollars for a non-refundable license in either cultivating, manufacturing or dispensaries all because they decided from the get-go to only allow the minimum amount of licenses. I’m just seriously tired of seeing the opening of dispensaries getting slid further and further back. By the way they’re are doing this we won’t see anything available until next year and that disgusts me because it didn’t have to happen this way and Missouri (and the rest of the country) needs this in the worst way. I guess I’ve whined enough on here so I’m done.

  2. The state has shown us they dont care about the medical program, the medical marijuana patients or getting the dispensaries open so we can finally access our medicine. A lot of patients suffer on a daily basis because they have no access to their medicine that what will help them to actually be able to live their lives. Fuck this state. They never cared about any of the patients here in need of their medicine. The state continues to lie and make excuses while we suffer with no answers. You can only blame covid for so long before you have to own up to your own incompetence and admit you don’t want this to actually happen and only want our money. We are 76 days until the 2 year mark of when medical marijuana was legalized with nothing to show for it but lies, our money taken for a useless medical card that can’t be used and no dispensaries. I’ve already made the decision to leave this state, the failure of opening dispensaries and getting our access to our medicine being the final straw for this decision. In about a month I will be moved out of this state and do not regret it in the slightest. The state has proven time after time they dont care about the medical program or the patients that need it with their careless actions, lies and still not giving access to our medicine. The result of your carelessness has caused many citizens to leave this horrid state and live elsewhere. Thanks for nothing.

  3. I wrote to MO DHSS to clarify the claim that they are automatically renewing our MMJ cards. They responded that the claim is not true.

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