Missouri’s Cannabis Job Market Skyrockets as Recreational Marijuana Industry Flourishes, Creating Opportunities for Thousands

Missouri’s Cannabis Job Market Skyrockets as Recreational Marijuana Industry Flourishes, Creating Opportunities for Thousands

The industry in Missouri is experiencing a remarkable surge, providing a multitude of job opportunities as the state embraces recreational marijuana. Marcus Kerr, a specialist at Luxury Leaf Cannabis , is among the many individuals who have joined the thriving sector. Hailing from Jamaica, where cannabis cultivation is deeply ingrained in the , Kerr brings his expertise to Missouri’s new journey into the recreational marijuana space. The state’s in the cannabis sector has witnessed exponential growth since the approval of recreational marijuana through a constitutional .

The escalating demand for cannabis professionals is reflected in the significant increase in the number of licenses granted by the state each month. In November, the Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) approved 264 badges, a figure that doubled in December and continued to surge in January and February, surpassing 1,100 badges. Christy Essex, the founder of Se7en Staffing & Employment Solutions, Missouri’s largest cannabis staffing company, anticipates this job growth trend to persist throughout the year. Various sectors within the industry, including manufacturing and laboratories, are actively seeking skilled personnel.

across the state are grappling with the challenge of keeping their shelves stocked, leading some companies to hire temporary employees to navigate the short-term crunches. The exceptional sales performance of Missouri’s cannabis market further reinforces its position as the “darling” of the industry. With sales reaching $102.9 million in the first month alone, including $72 million from recreational marijuana, the state is on track to become a billion-dollar market. This immense potential has prompted a wave of active hiring and aggressive recruitment strategies by cannabis companies and their partners.

However, a potential hurdle looms as a bill requiring fingerprinting for background checks gains traction in the state legislature. This bill, already passed in the and expected to receive support in the House, would mandate fingerprint-based background checks for all employees. While background checks are essential for ensuring security and preventing organized crime involvement, the process may slow down the hiring process, causing delays in filling crucial positions.

Background checks play a pivotal role in the cannabis industry, and their implementation varies across different states. In Missouri, the constitution prohibits individuals with a “disqualifying felony” from working in the industry, although the specifics of felony offenses are not explicitly defined. The Department of Health and Senior Services reviews each record on a case-by-case basis, considering factors beyond a simple checklist of potential offenses. This subjectivity often creates fear and apprehension among individuals, especially minorities, who assume that a misdemeanor on their record automatically disqualifies them from employment.

The current scenario in Missouri deviates from the previous fingerprinting requirements. Since Amendment 3 went into effect in December 2023, fingerprinting is no longer mandatory for employees applying for ID badges. However, owners are still required to undergo fingerprint-based background checks. A measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Tony Luetkemeyer aims to reinstate fingerprinting for all individuals involved in the cannabis industry, irrespective of their position or licensure type. The Missouri Association supports this bill, emphasizing consistent background check standards for facility owners, employees, and contractors.

Despite the potential challenges posed by background checks and fingerprinting, the cannabis job market in Missouri continues to flourish. The dynamic and rapidly evolving nature of the industry necessitates comprehensive training and education for employees at all levels. development professionals like Christy Essex devote substantial time to educate individuals about the background check process and dispel misconceptions. As the state ventures into uncharted territory, the booming cannabis industry offers abundant opportunities for job seekers while contributing to Missouri’s and the overall growth of the sector.

Malvin Felix
I'm Malvin, a cannabis news enthusiast who finds joy in staying updated about the latest industry trends. My passion led me to become a dedicated writer, entrepreneur, and investor in the cannabis space. Through my writing, I aim to educate and spark discussions, while my entrepreneurial ventures and strategic investments reflect my commitment to driving positive change in the industry.

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