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How Many Cannabis Microbusiness Licenses Has Missouri Issued?

Missouri’s Division of Cannabis Regulation recently posted the results of a random lottery drawing it conducted to award cannabis microbusiness licenses to qualified entities. It was the second of three expected rounds of microbusiness licenses to be awarded, per Article XIV, Section 2 of the Missouri Constitution.

“More than 2,000 applicants applied between April 15-29. Now that applicants have been selected through the lottery, all selected applications will be reviewed for eligibility. The lottery selection does not guarantee the applicant a facility license. No later than August of this year, a total of 57 microbusiness licenses will be issued, nine of which are available from the first round of licensing, due to revocations for rule violations. There will be a total of 33 microbusiness wholesale facility and 24 microbusiness dispensary facility licenses awarded during this round.” the Missouri Division of Cannabis Regulation stated in a news release.

“The microbusiness program is meant to boost opportunities in the industry for businesses in disadvantaged communities, and it was part of the constitutional amendment to legalize recreational marijuana that voters passed in November.” is how the Missouri Independent describes cannabis microbusinesses in the state.

“The program is designed to provide a path to larger facility ownership for individuals who might not otherwise easily access that opportunity, such as having a net worth of less than $250,000 or veterans with a service-connected disability.” Missouri Independent also stated in regards to cannabis microbusinesses.

Legal adult-use cannabis sales launched in Missouri in February 2023 (approved by voters in 2022), and in less than 30 days Missouri’s then nearly 200 dispensaries made roughly $72 million in sales. Missouri’s medical cannabis sales added an addition $31 million to the total amount of legal sales in Missouri during the period.

Since Missouri’s adult-use legalization industry launched, legal sales in the state have generated over $19 million for veterans, substance use treatment programs, and the Missouri Public Defenders System’s budget.

Part of Missouri’s legalization model involves earmarking cannabis industry tax revenue for related funds for veterans, substance use treatment programs, and public defenders.

According to leading cannabis industry data company Headset, “the total sales for March 2024 reached $124.08 million, with over 4 million units sold” in Missouri.

Per original reporting by Marijuana Moment, during the first year of legal adult-use sales Missouri “sold more than $1.4 billion worth of legal cannabis,” of which roughly $1.13 billion was from adult-use purchases and another $280 million was from medical cannabis transactions.

The United States adult-use cannabis industry has generated over $20 billion in total tax revenue since the first legal recreational cannabis purchase was made in Colorado on January 1st, 2014 according to a recent report by the Marijuana Policy Project.

“Through the first quarter of 2024, states have reported a combined total of more than $20 billion in tax revenue from legal, adult-use cannabis sales. In 2023 alone, legalization states generated more than $4 billion in cannabis tax revenue from adult-use sales, which is the most revenue generated by cannabis sales in a single year.” the Marijuana Policy Project stated in a press release.

Total legal cannabis sales in the United States are expected to reach $31.4 billion in 2024 according to a recent analysis by Whitney Economics. Additionally, leading cannabis jobs platform Vangst, in conjunction with Whitney Economics, estimates that the legal cannabis industry now supports 440,445 full time-equivalent cannabis jobs in the United States.

Whitney Economics also projects the following legal cannabis sales figures in the United States for the coming years:

  • 2024: $31.4 billion (9.1% growth from 2023)
  • 2025: $35.2 billion (12.1% growth from 2024)
  • 2030: $67.2 billion
  • 2035: $87.0 billion

The emerging legal cannabis industry in the United States is projected to add roughly $112 billion to the nation’s economy in 2024 according to a newly released analysis by MJBiz Daily. The projection is part of the company’s 2024 MJBiz Factbook.

“The total U.S. economic impact generated by regulated marijuana sales could top $112.4 billion in 2024, about 12% more than last year,” MJBiz stated in its initial reporting.