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New method developed for drug disposal

South Carolina Business Review
SC Public Radio

Disposing of controlled substances such as opioids and other painkillers is a highly regulated activity that has typically been a headache for many facilities since it has usually involved incineration. However, our next guest’s Lowcountry company has recently patented a chemical digestion technology that it hopes will become the preferred method in the pharmaceutical waste management industry. Mike Switzer interviews Sherri Barnes, chief operating officer at Okra Medical in Johns Island, SC.

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After almost 20 years, Mike Switzer retired from Wells Fargo Securities in 2001 as Senior Vice President/Investment Officer and Certified Portfolio Manager. In 1999, he and his wife, Maggie, purchased and operated for eight years the Baskin Robbins ice cream store on Forest Drive in Columbia. They grew the store from a bottom-tier operation in the Baskin Robbins franchise system to one in the top 5% nationwide within three years, tripling sales along the way. While operating the ice cream store, Mike and Maggie received patents for a portable ice cream sink and fold-down sneezeguard they invented and in 2002 started Magnolia Carts, an ice cream cart manufacturing company, which they sold in 2013.