NORTH elevates the dispensary experience with launch
Over half of Missouri’s dispensaries are now approved to operate
Missouri licensees have received approval to operate for well over 100 dispensaries, marking more than 50% of the dispensary licenses in the state as having received commencement and approval. Two of those commenced facilities are NORTH locations in Jefferson County.
Greenway recently spoke to NORTH Co-Founder and Director of Marketing and Procurement, Neil Volner, about what makes NORTH unique in a rapidly filling market. NORTH launched its Pevely location on May 26 and will host a Grand Opening for its Hillsboro location on June 12.
“The brand NORTH is a representation of having direction. At some point, we all struggled with finding where we belonged and having that sense of direction and purpose,” Volner explained.
“I have done many things in my life,” Volner explained. “I spent the better part of a decade in the customer service industry. Later, taking on the trade of painting, and did so for 10 years, ultimately owning and operating a painting company with my brother Leonard.”
The Volners are a big part of what makes NORTH unique.
“We are lifelong cannabis advocates and have both looked at the possibility of becoming a ‘cannabis refugee’, leaving our home for a state that valued cannabis and its benefits in the same way that we had. When medical cannabis became legal here in Missouri we didn’t waste a single second,” Volner said, “This was our time to shine.”
Born and raised in Jefferson County, they are building their brand – and their locations in their own backyard.
“This is our home, and we intend to remain involved with this community as we have with other businesses and our personal lives for years. We regularly sponsor local events to support the Sheriff’s Department, the Chamber of Commerce, Growth Associations, and many others,” Volner said. In addition to its sponsorships, NORTH has been actively involved in patient outreach and education, partnering with physicians for certifications and working with Jefferson College to create the Dispensary Agent Master Course program.
That community investment and pride can be seen as Volner talks about the staff and brand at NORTH, “Our staff has been put through rigorous training. Many of whom attended the Master Agent Course we built with Jefferson College. They are very professional and knowledgeable. Our patient-facing employees carry the title of Patient Consultant unlike many who consider themselves Bud Tenders. (Our staff’s) knowledge is based around the patient experience and how they can help those patients get the relief they need. They know their cannabis and cannabis products, but it is equally important to understand what that means for the patients and how best to serve them.”
“NORTH is one of a kind in many ways. We harbor a culture that truly appreciates and respects cannabis for its capabilities. Our staff is friendly, highly trained, and well versed in product knowledge,” Volner said, “The building is very open and welcoming with a ton of natural light. We wanted to bring cannabis out of the shadows and let it shine in all its beauty. The sales floor is clean and sleek, with a comfortable modern feel. We artfully embrace technology using a series of interactive tablets mounted to our display cases to make it easier for patients to get the product knowledge they are looking for.”
“From the beginning, our facility was designed with our patients in mind. We offer many different avenues of access to medical cannabis for our patients. We have express order kiosks in the waiting room for those who prefer not to go onto the sales floor. We are aware that many of the state’s patients have medical marijuana cards for mental health purposes and we wanted to offer anxiety-free access. We offer drive-thru pick-up for the patient who may have trouble or prefer not to get out of their car. We will also be launching our delivery service very soon, providing at your door service to those patients who may not be able to get to NORTH on their own.”
“We wanted to move away from the overwhelming menu boards that put patients on the spot when purchasing. Our sales flow is much more laid back allowing patients to browse or be guided if that is what they need. No matter the preference of your patient experience NORTH has an option for you.”
“We each have unique and admirable reasons for turning to the cannabis industry. We are living our best lives and our mission is to help others live their best lives through the relief and therapeutic benefits that cannabis has to offer,” Volner concluded.
NORTH has two locations, both in Jefferson County. Located in Pevely, MO (1709 HWY Z Pevely, Mo 63070) immediately off of I-55 South and in Hillsboro, MO located off Old HWY 21 (929 Peachtree Plaza Rd. Hillsboro, Mo 63050), NORTH will be open 11am-8pm daily. You can also find them online at NORTH.Life