Promoting compliance and sustainability: Cannabis waste guidelines for micro businesses in Missouri

Promoting compliance and sustainability: Cannabis waste guidelines for micro businesses in Missouri


As the cannabis industry continues to flourish, micro businesses, including cultivators, dispensaries, and manufacturing facilities in Missouri have a crucial role in meeting the needs of a growing consumer base. However, alongside this growth, it is essential for cannabis facilities to prioritize proper waste management, sustainable practices, and ensure compliance with the State’s cannabis waste disposal regulations. With licensing applications for the Missouri cannabis market set to open, now is the time for potential applicants to begin planning and understanding the waste preparation requirements for their facilities. This article will explore key considerations and guidelines for micro businesses applying in Missouri, ensuring they maintain environmentally responsible practices, promote sustainability, and also adhere to waste management regulations.

Understanding Waste Types: 

  • Micro cannabis businesses in Missouri must familiarize themselves with the various cannabis waste types generated in their operations. This includes plant waste, packaging waste, hazardous waste (such as solvents used during the extraction process), manufacturing waste, and more. Each waste category has nuanced handling, and disposal requirements mandated by the state, MO DNR and the EPA.

Compliance with Missouri Waste Disposal Regulations: 

  • Micro businesses operating in Missouri should closely review and understand cannabis waste disposal regulations set forth by the state. These regulations outline guidelines for waste storage, transportation, and disposal methods, all of which must be followed to maintain compliance and thus keep the lights on. Working with an experienced cannabis waste management company ensures compliance with the waste management regulations set forth by the state

Article: Understanding Cannabis Waste Compliance in Missouri

Understanding Hazardous Waste in Missouri’s Cannabis Industry: 

  • Micro-cannabis businesses in Missouri must pay particular attention to hazardous waste generated as part of their operations. This includes solvents, chemicals, and other substances that may pose a risk to human health or the environment. It is crucial to understand the specific hazardous waste regulations set forth by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and EPA. Microbusinesses should identify and properly label hazardous waste containers, ensure secure storage, and work with licensed hazardous waste disposal companies to meet regulatory requirements.

In addition to handling hazardous waste properly, micro cannabis businesses in Missouri should be hyper-aware of the need for proper off-gassing when using solvents during the extraction process. Many hazardous waste materials, such as butane and propane used during the extraction process, release harmful gasses into the atmosphere if not stored and off-gassed correctly before being rendered unusable. It is crucial to ensure proper ventilation and storage practices to minimize the risk of improper off-gassing and maintain a safe working environment.

Article: Understanding Hazardous Waste in Missouri’s Cannabis Industry

Rendering Non-Hazardous Cannabis Waste Unusable: 

  • In addition to hazardous waste, micro cannabis businesses in Missouri must also address the proper disposal of non-hazardous cannabis waste. While it may not pose the same level of risk as hazardous waste, it is essential to render this waste unusable before it leaves the facility. Failure to do so could result in a facility losing its license. To meet the standard for being rendered unusable, cannabis waste needs to be ground and mixed with other non-hazardous ground materials so that the resulting mixture is at least fifty percent (50%) non-cannabis waste by volume. This process ensures that the cannabis waste is no longer capable of being used or diverted for unauthorized purposes.


cleaning up leaves and pieces after the harvesting process of a cannabis operation

Developing a Waste Management Plan: 

  • To effectively manage waste and promote sustainability, micro cannabis businesses in Missouri should develop a comprehensive waste management plan. This plan should include procedures for waste segregation, storage, and disposal in accordance with state regulations to maintain compliance and minimize environmental impact. Implementing efficient waste management practices not only demonstrates regulatory compliance but also shows a commitment to sustainability and responsible environmental stewardship.

An experienced cannabis waste service will conduct a thorough assessment to evaluate your facility’s waste stream needs then create a customized waste management plan tailored to your facility.

Prioritizing Sustainable Waste Practices: 

  • Micro cannabis businesses in Missouri should prioritize incorporating sustainable practices into their waste management strategies. This can involve using recyclable packaging materials, implementing recycling programs for non-cannabis waste, and exploring opportunities for composting plant waste. By embracing sustainability, businesses can demonstrate their dedication to reducing their carbon footprint, conserving resources, and aligning with Missouri’s focus on green initiatives. Moreover, integrating sustainable practices helps build a positive reputation within the cannabis industry and among environmentally conscious consumers in an increasingly wasteful industry.

Partnering with Compliant Cannabis Waste Service Providers: 

  • To ensure proper waste disposal, sustainability, and compliance, microbusinesses in Missouri should partner with compliant cannabis waste service providers. A provider specializing in handling cannabis-related waste possesses the expertise to navigate the many unique and nuanced challenges associated with this process. Partnering with a reputable cannabis waste service provider not only guarantees compliance with Missouri waste management regulations but also ensures that waste is managed in an environmentally responsible manner. This further reinforces the commitment to sustainability within the cannabis industry in Missouri.

Article: Waste Stream Sustainability in Missouri’s Cannabis Industry


As micro cannabis businesses in Missouri prepare to submit their licensing applications, prioritizing waste management preparations, sustainability, and compliance is crucial. By understanding waste types, complying with state-specific disposal regulations, developing a waste management plan, promoting recycling and sustainable practices, and partnering with compliant cannabis waste service providers, these businesses can establish responsible, sustainable, and compliant operations. Proper waste management not only demonstrates regulatory compliance but also positions micro businesses as leaders in sustainability within the burgeoning cannabis industry in Missouri, fostering a positive impact on the environment and supporting the state’s green initiatives.


Monarch Waste is proud to be Missouri’s 1st cannabis waste service. We are also proud to be sustainable. Through strategic partnerships with like-minded brands, Monarch Waste Co. is taking the lead to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Missouri’s cannabis industry. Our clients agree — cannabis can be green!