BHO

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California: Gov. Brown Vetoes New Hash Crimes Bill

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

California Gov. Jerry Brown on Saturday vetoed a bill which would have created new penalties for making hash oil with flammable chemicals like butane. Brown said the state already has enough laws, and a prison overcrowding problem, and doesn't need to make the problem worse.

The Golden State has seen a rise in explosions and fires caused by the extraction of cannabis concentrates using volatile solvents like butane, reports David Downs at East Bay Express. But it's already against the law to make butane hash oil (BHO) in Cali. Arson and criminal negligence are also already crimes there.

Assembly Bill 849, from East Bay Assemblymember Susan Bonilla, would have created a new crime carrying prison sentences of up to six years for BHO blasters who hurt others. The bill passed the California Assembly -- unanimously! -- on August 31.

But Gov. Brown vetoed AB 849 and eight others for good measure, blasting reationary, "get tough" laws that result in prison overcrowding but don't do a damn thing to improve public safety.

"Each of this bills creates a new crime -- usually by finding a novel way to characterize and criminalize conduct that is already proscribed," Brown said. "This multiplication and particularization of criminal behavior creates increasing complexity without commensurate benefit.

Oregon: Thriving Hash Oil Market Skyrockets Demand For Marijuana Trim

BHOShatterSlab[NWCannabisNursery.com]

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Many of us can remember just a few years ago when it wasn't too hard to find free marijuana "trim," the leaves snipped from harvested cannabis flowers. Hell, quite a few growers had so much of the stuff, they threw it in the trash. How times have changed.

Trim has become a lucrative element of the cannabis economy in places like newly legal Oregon, where it's become a sought-after commodity in the state's thriving market for cannabis concentrates and infused edibles, reports Noelle Crombie at The Oregonian.

Trim has gone from free, almost being considered garbage, to fetching up to $400 a pound in Oregon. While $50 a pound was the norm just a couple years ago, $250 is closer to average now. (Cannabis flowers typically sell from $1,400 to $3,000 a pound on Oregon's wholesale market.)

One of the under-examined aspects of this green rush is the fact that it's made it much more difficult for cancer patients and their families to find full extract cannabis oil (FECO), popularly known as "Rick Simpson Oil" or RSO, because that same trim which would have gone into making FECO through an alcohol extraction process is now often diverted into making butane hash oil (BHO), favored by many recreational consumers.

Colorado: Marijuana Often Laced With Pesticides, Heavy Metals and Fungus

AndyLaFrate

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Lab tests from Colorado indicate that while the legal cannabis on store shelves is more potent than the marijuana of 30 years ago, it is often contaminated with fungi, pesticides and heavy metals.

"There's a stereotype, a hippy kind of mentality, that leads people to assume that growers are using natural cultivation methods and growing organically," said Andy LaFrate, founder of Charas Scientific, one of eight labs in Colorado certified to test marijuana. "That's not necessarily the case at all."

LaFrate presented his findings this week at a meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in Denver.

LaFrate said his group has tested more than 600 strains of marijuana from dozens of producers. Potency tests looked at tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the principal psychoactive component responsible for the high. They found that modern cannabis contains THC levels of 18 to 30 percent, double to triple averages from the 1980s.

Breeding for more THC has led to less cannabidiol (CBD), a compound which is also medically beneficial in treating anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, Huntington's, Alzheimer's, epilepsy, seizures and other conditions. Much of the commercial marijuana tested had very little CBD.

"A lot of the time it's below the detection level of our equipment, or it's there at a very low concentration that we just categorize as a trace amount," LaFrate said.
"I've heard a lot of complains from medical patients because somebody claims that a product has a high level of CBD, and it turns out that it actually doesn't."

Washington: Legal Marijuana Draft Rules Facing Opposition

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Washington state's proposed rules for newly legal marijuana aren't even 24 hours old yet, but are already under attack by critics.

The draft regulations -- 46 pages of them -- were released on Thursday, reports Oregon Public Broadcasting, and they cover everything from where cannabis can be grown to the criminal history of those who apply for licenses.

Under the proposed rules, anyone who wants to be involved in the legal marijuana business would have to submit to a background check. This even includes the financial backers of marijuana businesses; any felony convictions in the past decade would likely disqualify applicants.

The locations where cannabis will be grown has resulted in much discussion. The Board wants to limit grows to secure buildings or greenhouses, indoor cultivation only.

Another limitation in the proposed rules -- a ban on hash, hash oil and other concentrates extracted from cannabis, unless they're infused into an edible product -- is generating lots of controversy.

"I believe that the products that we're producing have received a bad rap because of the nickname BHO, butane extracted hash oil," Jim Andersen, who works with a company called XTracted, said.

Butane is often used to extract the THC, Andersen said, but he claimed if it's done right it leaves no chemical traces; he plans to fight the ban on marijuana extracts.

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