Following Ordinance Approval, Recreational Marijuana Sales Commence in The City Limits!

On Tuesday, cannabis dispensaries in Columbia began selling legally to those over the age of 21.

Because the Columbia City Council didn’t vote on a bill allowing medical marijuana facilities to convert their licences to also sell recreational marijuana until their regular meeting on February 6, the dispensaries within city limits were delayed by a few days.

If their licences were approved by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, dispensaries outside of city limits could open as early as February 3.

Nick Rinella, CEO of Hippos Marijuana Dispensary, said, “I mean, we would have liked to have gone on Friday with everybody else, but we gotta be happy about the present and the future. So, let’s just keep going. And we’re glad to finally be able to offer our products and services to Columbians.

Voters in Missouri approved Amendment 3 in November, and as of December 8th, adults over the age of 21 could legally possess up to three ounces of marijuana. As of the 8th of December, businesses could also apply for a “comprehensive” licence that would allow them to sell both medical and recreational marijuana.

It was widely expected that sales would kick off on February 6. However, if licence applications were approved by the department by February 2, sales could begin that day.

Recreational marijuana sales begin in city limits following ordinance approval

In a press release, Rinella said that his team had prepared diligently for February 6 and was eagerly anticipating the opening day. However, Rinella noted that sales were “definitely hurt” when the department allowed sales to begin on February 3 despite Columbia’s lack of approval of the ordinance at the time.

It was reported in a press release from the Missouri Cannabis Trade Association that over the course of the weekend, marijuana dispensaries in the state sold over $12 million worth of product, $8.5 million of which was purchased by recreational users.

Despite the drop in business, Rinella is relieved that adults over the age of 21 can now legally purchase cannabis.

Those who previously had to resort to the black market for their marijuana purchases can now visit dispensaries like Hippos to acquire tried and true goods.

It’s impossible to know what kind of pesticides or other chemicals have been used on items purchased on the black market, as Rinella put it. Everything sold in a legal dispensary has been thoroughly researched and proven to be risk-free for human consumption.


Mohit Sharma

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