In November, Missouri citizens chose to legalize cannabis for adult use. That constitutional amendment also provided a framework for micro businesses—business licenses that allowed more middle-class citizens to enter the cannabis industry as owners. Our regulatory experts in this blog will give an overview of the FAQs the leaders have been asked about who qualifies for the license, license availability, and distribution.
What is a cannabis microbusiness?
A dispensary or a wholesale facility is considered a micro business facility since they both operate marijuana-related businesses for medical and recreational purposes and are subject to size and other operational limitations.
In Missouri, medical or comprehensive dispensaries and wholesale facilities are prohibited from collaborating with microbusiness dispensaries and wholesale facilities; only other micro businesses are allowed. A complete or medical marijuana facility licensee may apply for a microbusiness license, but vice versa. A microbusiness licensee cannot apply for an extended or medical marijuana facility license.
Who can apply for a Missouri microbusiness cannabis license?
An application for a cannabis microbusiness license must meet at least one of the following microbusiness requirements:
- Has a net worth of less than $250,000 and an income that is less than 250% of the federal poverty line;
- has a valid U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs service-connected disability card;
- Is someone who has been arrested, prosecuted, or convicted of a nonviolent marijuana offense or whose parent or guardian has been arrested, charged, or convicted of a nonviolent cannabis offense;
- Resides in a ZIP code or census tract where 30% or more of the population is poor, the unemployment rate is 50% higher than the state average, or the historical rate of incarceration for marijuana-related offenses is 50% higher than the state average; or has a ZIP code within an unaccredited school or previously graduated from one.
How do you apply for a cannabis microbusiness license?
Microbusiness license application materials and instructions will be available in early June. These materials will be available on the Department of Health and Senior Services’ website, which can be found at health.mo.gov/safety/cannabis/.
What types of cannabis facilities can you operate with a cannabis microbusiness license?
An organization that requests a microbusiness license may run a micro business wholesale or dispensary operation.
A license for a dispensary facility enables a person to buy marijuana and goods infused with marijuana from other microbusiness facilities, process, package, and deliver them to other micro business facilities, or sell them directly to customers.
A license for a wholesale facility enables a person to grow, refine, produce, transport, and sell marijuana and items containing marijuana to other micro business facilities. Up to 250 flowering plants may be grown concurrently by an individual with a micro business wholesale facility license.
Medical or comprehensive dispensaries and wholesale facilities cannot collaborate with microbusiness dispensaries and wholesale facilities; only other microbusinesses may. A complete or medical marijuana facility licensee may apply for a microbusiness license, but vice versa. A microbusiness licensee cannot apply for an extended or medical marijuana facility license.
How many cannabis microbusiness licenses will be distributed?
Moore stated that the first set of microbusiness licenses will be distributed in October. A lottery mechanism will distribute these licenses.
Forty-eight microbusiness licenses will be distributed in October. Another 48 licenses will be issued nine months later, followed by a third round of 48 permits in nine months. One hundred forty-four microbusiness licenses will be available by April 2025.
How much does it cost to apply for a cannabis microbusiness license?
The application fee for a microbusiness license is $1,500 per entity. This charge is returned if the division’s lottery mechanism does not choose an individual. Claims are valid for three years and can be renewed.
The licensee must pay an annual fee of $1,500 per facility license, except for the first year, which is exempt.
How we can help?
At Cannabis License Experts, we provide you with the guidance to plan your cannabis business, acquire funding, navigate the legal requirements, and acquire the appropriate cannabis license for your operations. As the United States and Missouri specifically develop, more and more licensed microbusinesses will be needed to meet the demands of consumers.
Cannabis License Experts offers support from day one of starting your cannabis business, including strategic planning, floor plan preparation, site audits, SOPs, Preventive Control Plans (PCPs), and more.
Our Edibles Compliance division can provide you with a solid plan for your edibles business to help get your products on store shelves.
Contact us today to discover how we can license and legalize your cannabis business to meet federal or provincial regulations.