Rebecca Rivas

Rebecca Rivas

Rebecca Rivas is a multimedia reporter who covers Missouri's cannabis industry. A graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, she has been reporting in Missouri since 2001, including more than a decade as senior reporter and video producer at the St. Louis American, the nation’s leading African-American newspaper.

Opposing sides of Missouri marijuana recall to face off in administrative hearing

By: - September 27, 2023

Recalls on cannabis products have become common in other states where marijuana is legal.  But when Missouri regulators issued their first recall last month, veterans of the industry were surprised. While recalls most commonly involve a company cooperating with regulators to understand the issue — was there bacteria in the product, or perhaps a wrong […]

(Photo by Rebecca Rivas/The Missouri Independent)

Confusion continues over how hemp was processed in recalled Missouri cannabis products

By: - September 25, 2023

At the center of Missouri’s massive marijuana recall is a THC concentrate, or distillate, made partially from hemp. Robertsville-based marijuana manufacturer Delta Extraction has denied accusations that it illegally imported marijuana into the state by arguing it actually imported a non-psychoactive hemp product that was converted into THC once in Missouri.  The commissioner overseeing Delta’s […]

Missouri marijuana regulators defend product testing regime in aftermath of recall

By: - September 19, 2023

The Missouri Division of Cannabis Regulation is responding to questions about the effectiveness of the software it uses to track information about marijuana products, including the results of state-mandated testing.  In a guidance document issued on Monday, the agency addressed questions regarding testing regulations that cannabis businesses rely on to ensure product is safe — […]

Missouri colleges expand cannabis programs to prepare students for ‘green jobs’

By: - September 18, 2023

Karina Hernandez’s ideal work environment is surrounded by plants, with her hands in the dirt.  Although she already has a biology degree, she recently decided to go back to school to take classes in horticulture at St. Louis Community College at Meramec, the state’s largest horticulture program.  And she was surprised to see courses on […]

Missouri company at center of cannabis recall used hemp instead of marijuana in products

By: - September 11, 2023

Richard Batenburg Jr. feels deceived and cheated.  His cannabis brand, Colorado-based The Clear, has been partnering with a licensed Missouri manufacturer to produce pre-rolled joints. Some were infused with a THC concentrate, or distillate, purchased from a Robertsville-based company called Delta Extraction. When the state issued a recall last month of all products made with […]

Did recalled Missouri cannabis products pose health risks? Regulators aren’t sure 

By: - September 11, 2023

Marijuana dispensaries and warehouses across Missouri are holding on to more than 62,000 products in special vaults.  The state suspects that they were infused with a questionable THC concentrate, or distillate, purchased from a Robertsville-based licensed marijuana manufacturer called Delta Extraction.  Delta Extraction is fighting to get the Aug. 14 recall overturned — and one […]

Missouri judge dismisses cannabis company’s lawsuit against state to stop recall

By: - August 30, 2023

A Missouri judge denied on Wednesday a marijuana company’s effort to stop the recall of 62,000 products containing the company’s THC concentrate that the state deemed a “potential threat to health and safety.”  The company, Delta Extraction, is a Robertsville-based licensed marijuana manufacturer that specializes in making THC distillate, a highly potent and pure form […]

Missouri announces lottery results for microbusiness cannabis licenses

By: - August 29, 2023

The state began the process of doling out small-scale cannabis business licenses on Monday, announcing the winners of a lottery determining who gets to participate in Missouri’s microbusiness program.  Six winners were selected in each of Missouri’s eight Congressional districts.  Of the six in each district, two will be microbusiness dispensaries, and four will be […]

Can I bring my weed into the music festival at the public park?

By: - August 25, 2023

So you’re heading to the Evolution Festival this weekend in St. Louis, and you picked up a “music festival fanny pack” stuffed with pre-rolled joints, vapes, THC-infused mints, and the works at Hippos dispensary in Chesterfield.  Now that recreational marijuana is legal, you’re thinking you can roll right through the gate with your Barbie-pink fanny […]

Missouri cannabis regulators target ‘lab shopping’ in new rules

By: - August 21, 2023

In the marijuana industry, they say potency is king.  Producers all over the country are competing to put the most intoxicating product on the shelves. And that can leave the labs who test these products in a tough spot. At least, that’s been the case in California and other states where marijuana is legal, said […]

State faces pushback from Missouri marijuana industry over product recall

By: - August 16, 2023

Twice this summer, Andrew Mullins emailed state marijuana regulators to make sure they knew about a potential problem. Mullins, the president of the Missouri Cannabis Trade Association, feared that licensed Missouri cannabis companies may be tempted to add illegal marijuana products brought in from other states to their own products in order to keep their […]

Missouri regulators can now subpoena records from marijuana facilities

By: - July 28, 2023

If state regulators decide they need to investigate a licensed marijuana facility, they typically ask for certain records.  But an easy place for businesses to “hide” records is with their security companies or other contractors, said Amy Moore, director of the state’s cannabis regulation under the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. Those “third-party […]