WASHINGTON — If you sell marijuana in Missouri, even legally, there’s always the worry of getting robbed.
Because of the drug’s illegal status at the federal level, most cannabis businesses can’t accept credit card payments from customers, resulting in a lot of cash payments.
“Without credit cards, dispensaries operate, very cash heavy,” said Nate Ruby, the president of Illicit Gardens, a Kansas City area cannabis business. “Which forces them to have a lot of cash on hand, which can result in higher potential for robberies.”
That means heightened security at dispensaries, including cameras to make sure the businesses are safe.
It’s one of the many realities of the cannabis businesses operating amid uncertainty in a relatively young industry where they’re constitutionally protected in their home state while still considered illegal by the federal government. But while Missouri marijuana businesses straddle the line between locally legal and federally illicit, it hasn’t won them the support of the state’s mostly Republican congressional delegation.
Ruby’s cannabis company’s name is Illicit for a reason — it’s intended to draw attention to his product’s legal status and people who have been imprisoned for nonviolent cannabis crimes.
Nearly 30 years ago, states began the process of legalizing marijuana. It started with…
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