Summer 2018 brought new regulations for the safety of marijuana products in California, and unfortunately, that has been bad news for various businesses. In fact, one in five of the products currently on shelves in the state are failing when tested for both level of purity and the potential impact of the marijuana on the consumer.
In some cases, the fix is a matter of re-labeling the product for accurate potency information. However, other products endanger the consumer with unacceptable levels of bacteria or pesticides from the marijuana growth, leading to the destruction of said products. This means loss of profit for those companies struggling to find a foothold in the growing cannabis market in California.
For those in the industry, concerns are rising that the new regulations are unfair and have unrealistic expectations. There are also issues with the technology involved in testing, making those who are against the new regulations question whether or not accuracy is going to be a concern as time goes on.
Candy, cookies and tinctures seem to be among the products taking the biggest hit from failure to meet the new standards. State officials feel this is a sign that the regulations are working as expected.
The California Growers Association, meanwhile, is strongly advocating for changes to the regulations, stating that the desired results for growers is a much narrower range than is reasonable. The margin of error is small for those products that are being rejected or destroyed, according to the group.
Another frightening issue is the fact that some samples have had mould on them yet passed the state testing. This occurs while other quality products are rejected. Since July 1, almost 11,000 samples have been tested and 1,904 were rejected. Of those, roughly 1,200 test failures were related to labeling issues.
Roughly 90% of buds tested, however, did make it to the marketplace, indicating growers are on the right track and can consider themselves successful when it comes to meeting safety regulations.
Another positive result of this testing and the market in general is that, after almost nine months of sales, no illness has been reported that links to the marijuana market or products that include THC.