Missouri Medical Marijuana Cards Surpass the 100,000 Mark
- The number of patients with Missouri medical Marijuana cards has passed the 100,000 mark.
- Missouri medical marijuana dispensaries have sold nearly $50 million worth of marijuana.
- There are currently 101 medical marijuana dispensaries in Missouri and counting.
- Lawmakers in the state are now considering licensing recreational marijuana dispensaries.
Missouri medical marijuana dispensaries opened their doors for business last October. And after getting off to a slow start, marijuana sales have picked up substantially in 2021. The state has now passed out more than 100,000 medical marijuana cards and sales are fast approaching the $50 million mark.
We take pride in the fact that more than 20,000 patients interested in applying for a Missouri medical marijuana card got the process rolling on this very website. And hundreds of thousands more have been directed to their local dispensaries where they can buy cannabis products after an appointment to see a medical marijuana doctor.
Thank you, MO Dispensaries
Business is picking up
Medical marijuana was legalized in Missouri In November of 2018 when voters approved a ballot initiative. But it took two years to fire up dispensaries in the state. Initially, the only product available for purchase was cannabis flower. At that time, cannabis concentrates, and marijuana edibles remained on the illicit list.
However, in late December 2020, Missouri dispensaries were finally given the green light to sell medical marijuana edibles including marijuana-infused chocolate bars, beverages, and gummies, and even cannabis-infused bonbons. And just recently, the state legalized cannabis concentrates such as oils, wax, hash, and live rosin.
Although dispensary business dipped slightly in late May, sales came in at over $3 million for the second consecutive week. Moreover, it was the tenth straight week of over $2 million in sales, and the third week in a little over a month to surpass the $3 million mark. As of May 21, the Missouri DHSS reported $47.9 million in total sales.
Missouri medical marijuana taxes
The outstanding sales figures are not just a boon for the cannabis industry, but also for the state. More than 100,000 patients and caregivers now carry a Missouri medical marijuana card. And every one of them pays a 4 percent sales tax at dispensaries. That comes to about $2 million.
That marijuana tax revenue is earmarked for a fund benefitting Missouri veterans programs. For example, the state will be spending $2.5 million to build a village of tiny homes for homeless veterans in St. Louis. The project is being modeled after a similar village in Kansas City.
Unfortunately, it will be some time before that revenue stream is doing any good, as most of what’s been collected has been spent fighting lawsuits from applicants that were not granted dispensary licenses.
Missouri Dispensaries 101
There are currently 101 state-licensed medical marijuana dispensaries in Missouri and another 36 licensed cultivators and manufacturers.
Today, products available at Missouri medical marijuana dispensaries include a variety of strains of cannabis flower, cannabis concentrate syringes and tinctures, transdermal patches, vape pens, and cannabinoid-infused edibles among others.
As the number of patients carrying medical marijuana cards in Missouri grows, so too will dispensary menus.
Along with a list of the usual qualifying medical conditions such as epilepsy, cancer, and others, the DHSS lists opioid replacement as a condition for obtaining medical marijuana in Missouri. Missouri medical marijuana doctors can now recommend patients use medical marijuana to treat pain rather than prescribing opioids, or as an adjunct to opioids.
Since this program started, the number of opioid prescriptions has fallen in Missouri. And along with it, so too have the number of Missourians who are addicted to opioids and dying as a result of opioid abuse.
Missouri Medical MJ | Video
Will Missouri legalize recreational marijuana?
If the state of Missouri should choose to legalize adult recreational use of marijuana, the current sales figures could be dwarfed. But will it happen?
A bold proposal has been put forth to rework Missouri medical marijuana laws to allow access to all adults over the age of 21 in addition to qualified patients.
If passed and signed, Bill HJR 30, alternatively known as the Smarter and Safer Missouri Act would create a constitutional amendment to develop a recreational marijuana industry in Missouri. At a tax rate of 12 percent, it could be a windfall for the state.
How would legalizing recreational marijuana affect Missouri’s medical marijuana patients?
A section of the medical marijuana amendment states that the substance “shall be available to patients, who have a physician’s recommendation for its use” and that patients “shall be afforded the same rights and privileges afforded to any patient treated through conventional therapeutic means, regardless of whether the person is under the care of a physician.”
The proposal is different than most other states that have legalized marijuana as no special licensing would be required “beyond that which is applicable for the cultivating, harvesting, processing, manufacturing, packaging, distributing, transferring, displaying, or possession of any nontoxic food or food product.”
The amendment would also allow individuals to cultivate their own cannabis for medical or personal use and it would protect patients’ rights to consume medical cannabis in rental lodgings.
Before the legislation is put on a statewide ballot, it must first be approved by both the Senate and the House. If this happens, then a voter initiative will appear on the November 2022 ballot.
This bill is just one of several marijuana legalization proposals being developed.
How To Get a Missouri Medical Marijuana Card
The first step in obtaining a Missouri medical marijuana card is to talk to a qualified physician. Once a patient has been doctor-approved they can apply with the DHSS. It takes about 30 days to be approved.
Sources and additional reading
- Medical Marijuana Sales Soar In Missouri, What’s Next?
- Missouri medical marijuana industry tops $44 million in sales
- Missouri sustains +$3M medical marijuana sales for consecutive weeks — Greenway Magazine
- Missouri Lawmaker’s New Bill Would Put Marijuana Legalization On 2022 Ballot
- Missouri Lawmaker Introduces Legislation to Place Adult-Use Cannabis Legalization on 2022 Ballot