Missouri’s Medical Marijuana Program Sees Huge Growth in First Year

High Times

A little less than a year after the state made its first medical marijuana sale, Missouri’s medical marijuana program has swelled to more than 140 dispensaries. According to local television station FOX 2 NOW, the “state’s medical cannabis industry employs roughly 5,000 people” and sales have been strong. “The sales revenue is pleasantly surprising,” Lyndall Fraker, director of the section of medical marijuana with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, told the TV station. “At the end of July, we surpassed $91 million in sales.” In 2018, voters in Missouri approved a constitutional amendment legalizing medical cannabis with more than 65 percent support. Proponents of the amendment called on the Show Me State to open at least 192 dispensaries, a threshold that Fraker said Missouri is likely to reach. “The amendment that was voted on said that we should open the minimum number at least, which was 192 dispensaries,” Fraker said, as quoted by FOX 2 NOW. “As of today, we have 142 open. We’ve done the math, and based on the number of quantities that each patient can purchase each month, how much product it would take to serve the patient base, and we think we are going to be good for five or six years.” In October of last year, Missouri’s first dispensaries opened their doors to long lines. With the success of the medical marijuana program, Missourians may be emboldened to take the next step and embrace legalization of recreational pot use. Earlier this year, a Republican lawmaker in Missouri said it’s time for the state to go in that direction. “We spend more time and more law enforcement resources going after marijuana smokers than all the other drugs combined,” GOP state House Representative Shamed Dogan said at the time “Ten percent of the arrests…

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