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KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Medical marijuana is now being sold at a handful of Missouri dispensaries, including one in Lee’s Summit. But before it can be sold, it has to be tested. 

The state licensed 10 laboratory testing facilities, but so far only two have been approved to begin operations. One of those is the only such facility in the Kansas City area, Green Precision Analytics. 

It’s been a busy 2020 for Josh Kollmeyer,  a medical laboratory scientist at the facility.

“Two months ago I was doing COVID testing for the medical labs I was running and now here I am testing cannabis,” he said.

The lab received its first big shipment of medical marijuana for testing Tuesday from a Carrolton, Mo. cultivator. .5 percent of all product has to be shipped for testing before any of that crop can be sold. 

“We’re kind of the checks and balances between the cultivators and manufacturers to the medicine that goes to consumers and dispensaries,” Kollmeyer said.

But he’s not doing it alone there’s a team of microbiologists, chemists, and of course “Cheech and Chong” and “Bill and Ted.” Those are the names for the machines that run each product through 7 to 9 tests before it can go to market.  They start by grinding it into a powder and then using a solvent to create a liquid solution placed in vials. It’s then tested for potency and cannabinoids which will go on the label.

“Once it does its analysis in here it’s going to give a nice little report like this,” Kollmeyer demonstrated.

“We’re looking at THC Delta 9, that’s what gives you the psychoactive effect or how high you are going to get.”

They also test for pesticides, fungus, mold, other microbials and metals. Each lab has to abide by strict guidelines set by the state governing medical marijuana. 

 “We’re just excited to provide high quality testing and pushing out high quality products to the dispensaries. We want everybody to be comfortable that when you do get a product that says tested by Green Precision Analytics it’s been through a gamut of testing and safe for your consumption,” he said.

The labs have promised the state they’ll be able to test the products and have it to market within 5 days. But with more and more cultivators coming online, and 192 dispensaries already approved to operate, Green Precision Analytics and the state’s only other approved lab are certainly going to be busy.