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Medical marijuana testing license awarded in Springfield

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Last edited 1:58 p.m., Dec. 19, 2019

A group of medical marijuana entrepreneurs got the nod from the state today to move forward on plans to open a testing facility in Springfield.

Botannis Labs Mo. Corp. – owned by entrepreneurs from St. Louis and New York – was awarded the license by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, said group spokesman and lobbyist Jeffrey Altmann. It was one of the 17 applicants in the state to seek a testing facility license, but the only group to apply in the Queen City. The state is expected to award 10 licenses statewide.

“We’re really happy to be the first license awarded for anything marijuana-related in the state. We look forward to being able to keep this industry safe and successful for everyone involved,” Altmann said.

Testing facilities will verify levels of THC in the marijuana products and screen them for any foreign matter or dangerous bacteria, according to a DHSS news release.

Because marijuana products must be tested before getting to the consumer, Botannis Labs will work closely with cultivators and infused-product manufacturers in the region. In the Springfield area, 11 cultivation and 15 infused-product manufacturing applications were submitted, including one of each from Grant Wistrom’s Revival 98 LLC and Desmond Morris’ The Wholesome Bud Co. and Wholesome Extracts LLC.

Botannis Labs officials have plans to set up shop in a 5,000-square-foot space at 215 N. Grant Ave. for an undisclosed amount, according to past Springfield Business Journal reporting.

Altmann said the group will now begin infill work at the facility, purchasing testing equipment for an undisclosed amount and establishing relationships with possible cultivators and infused-product manufacturers in the area.

One other local group, dubbed ContiCorp LLC, applied for a testing facility license in Stone County, set to open shop in Galena. Chris Conti, owner of the group, said he also received a license.

“We’re the only ones not on I-70 that got a license,” Conti said of his group and Botannis Labs. “Having local testing labs will definitely help lower prices for local producers.”

ContiCorp will work out of 6,000-square-foot space in Galena, Conti said. He said he anticipates build-out and equipment purchases to cost at least $1 million.

The state health department will continue dishing out nearly 350 licenses for medical marijuana facility bids through Jan. 31. The next announcement is Dec. 23 for transportation facility certifications.

State officials did not confirm the licenses for Botannis Labs and ContiCorp by deadline.

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