Missouri licenses 192 medical marijuana dispensaries

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It took only two days for Missouri regulators to award all 192 medical cannabis store licenses in the state.

Voters approved a constitutional amendment in 2018 that requires the state’s Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) to license at least 192 dispensaries, 24 in each of Missouri’s eight congressional districts, according to St. Louis Public Radio.

Medical marijuana sales are expected to begin in the spring, according to the DHSS.

Marijuana Business Daily projects annual retail sales will reach approximately $300 million in a few years.

The DHSS started issuing dispensary permits on Thursday and published a complete list on Friday of licenses awarded and applications denied.

The agency could award more licenses beyond the 192 already issued, but officials want to see if the minimum number can meet demand.

“In early 2019, DHSS commissioned an independent study from the University of Missouri to determine how many licenses would be necessary to meet Missouri’s demand,” agency spokeswoman Lisa Cox said in a statement.

“The results showed it would be many years before the medical marijuana market would be likely to sustain even the minimum number of licenses mandated by the constitution.”

Seed-to-sale facility certifications will be disclosed Jan. 31.