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St. Louis company opens first of two marijuana manufacturing facilities

"We are excited to open this amazing cannabis manufacturing facility in St. Louis"
Credit: SLBJ
Jamila Owens-Todd (left) and Stephanie Cernicek of Phytos, a medical marijuana manufacturer.

ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis medical marijuana manufacturer is up and running after obtaining state approval, completing an integration strategy for parent company BeLeaf Medical.

Cannabis manufacturer Phytos passed a series of required inspections from the Missouri Department Health and Senior Services to launch the first of two medical marijuana manufacturing facilities.

BeLeaf, based in Earth City, becomes Missouri's first vertically integrated medical cannabis company, meaning it controls its own supply chain — cultivation, manufacturing and dispensing. It also owns the Sinse Cannabis cultivation facility and Swade Cannabis dispensaries.

Three women lead Phythos: Chief Science Officer Stephanie Cernicek, a Ph.D. chemist; Research and Development Manager Jamila Owens-Todd; and BeLeaf partner Mitch Meyers.

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“We are excited to open this amazing cannabis manufacturing facility in St. Louis, allowing us to provide high-quality cannabis products with a relentless focus on patients and product safety — and being vertically integrated allows us to grow, manufacture and sell to patients quicker," Meyers said.

The nearly 8,000-square-foot Phytos facility — BeLeaf does not publicly disclose the exact location of its cultivation and manufacturing operations for security reasons — will use a variety of extraction methods, including CO2. The methods are precise and allow for consistent and reliable cannabis products, the company said.

“Phytos has the unique ability to produce live resin products due to shared facility space with our cultivation operation Sinse Cannabis, allowing our team to extract fresh plant material at sub-zero temperatures, preserving delicate terpenes and yielding a high-quality, flavorful concentrate,” Cernicek said. 

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