Missouri’s first Black-owned medical cannabis dispensary is set to open next month, the St. Louis American reports. Adrienne Scales-Williams, the owner of Luxury Leaf, is also the owner of Document Imaging Systems of St Louis, Inc., which placed number 23 on the 2020 St. Louis Business Journal list of minority-owned businesses. She said that “being a long-term entrepreneur,” she “understands the ups and downs of highly regulated industries.”
The cannabis industry is one that lacks ownership by minorities and women — with barely 10% of cannabusinesses owned by Black people and Hispanic people, according to Marijuana Business Daily figures — but Scales-Williams said that even with her understanding, business, as a whole, “is commonly filled with men” but she doesn’t “focus on that as a negative.”
“I kept my focus and pushed full force throughout all of my endeavors,” she told the American, adding that she wants Luxury Leaf “to be a successful dispensary serving all.”
“I am an advocate for alternative medicines and want to be a part of a culture that promotes plants in healing. I want to invest in something so innovative and great for patients. I want patients to feel healing when they enter the dispensary space. I will also offer virtual classes to keep education at the forefront of this industry. In addition, it was important to have this business in the city of St. Louis, to closely engage the community in a very direct way.” — Scales-Williams to the American
In the first year of sales, Missouri’s medical cannabis industry has created more than $136 million in state tax revenues, according to the state Department of Health and Senior Services Section for Medical Marijuana Regulation data outlined by the American.
Missouri advocacy organization Legal Missouri 2022 is also circulating a petition for broad cannabis legalization in the state. The group must collect 170,000 valid signatures in six of the state’s eight congressional districts to place the initiative on next year’s midterm election ballot. Missouri voters passed the medical cannabis reforms in 2018 with 66% of the vote.
Get daily cannabis business news updates. Subscribe