From seed to shelf – Medical marijuana usage in Missouri

SPRINGFIELD, MO (KPLR) - Medical marijuana is now being grown and sold in Missouri – legally. Ashley Markum says her son Ayden has tried at least 10 traditional prescription drugs with no success.

“One of them actually took away his ability to eat,” Markum said. “It atrophied his muscles so much that he couldn’t swallow, so he would choke and then aspirate.”

The family drove to Chesterfield from Springfield, Missouri to get one of the first batches of legal CBD oil sold in the state.

The contents of the bottle began as seedlings in July. They were grown in a Pacific, MO greenhouse and harvested in October.
Dr. Jason Strotheide is licensed to grow it. The state requires samples. He sends them to an Illinois lab, which will test it to make sure it’s not a strain that can get someone high.
Missouri law only allows the plants to be processed into CBD oil for treating intractable epilepsy. The Markum's are one of 56 families in Missouri granted a hemp extract registration card. The card is hi-tech to prevent fakes.
Dr. Strotheide demonstrated as he rubbed the card.

“So the ink disappears, then it comes back. That’s how we validate the card,” he said.

“We have traveled to legal states before and tried the CBD oil for his seizures and it has helped drastically,” Markum said. “We go from having seizures all day long to maybe just a hand full. We actually got his first laugh after trying the CBD oil.”

It’s non-psychoactive, which means it cannot get you high.

“I would just invite people to watch Ayden for a day. And watch him have a seizure back to back and watch him be in pain, from the muscle spasms, from the seizures, from all of those things and I think they would change their mind,” Markum said.

During our interview with the Markum family, we also met Karin Chester, who’s been documenting the lives of Missouri medical cannabis patients for the Missouri Patient Project.