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Colorado: Pesticides Remain Hot Button For Cannabis Industry


Cannabis Business Alliance calls for sensible regulations

As pesticide legislation works its way through the Colorado General Assembly, the Cannabis Business Alliance (CBA) is calling for sensible regulation of pesticides.

The Schedule I federal status of marijuana has presented challenges to the Colorado industry: pesticides do not contain labeling for cannabis use, and research is non-existent for the use of pesticides on cannabis. As of now, pesticides cannot be registered with the EPA to be labeled and approved for use on cannabis.

Applying many pesticides off-label may not be dangerous, but the ambiguity puts the industry in an uncertain position as a whole. The same pesticides barred for use by the cannabis industry are, in fact, used every day on strawberries and tomatoes that consumers purchase at major natural grocery chains.

“The cannabis industry wants to comply and work with the government to provide proper regulations for businesses across the state,” said Mark Slaugh, CBA Board Member and iComply CEO. “However, the industry needs more labs certified for pesticide testing, as well as clear and consistent guidelines for businesses.

"Guidelines rooted in evidence-based in science," Slaugh said. "Some facilities may choose to go pesticide free, but there are many options to mitigate pests.

"Not all pesticides are harmful if used properly," Slaugh said. "The current issue is that the industry hasn’t been able to identify pesticides that are labeled for use on cannabis, because of the crop’s federal status.”

Colorado: Pesticides Lead To Biggest Marijuana Recall Yet


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

More than 99,500 packages of marijuana-infused Mountain High Suckers were recalled on Wednesday.

It was the largest recall of marijuana or cannabis products yet, and the 15th such recall in 16 weeks, reports Ricardo Baca at The Denver Post.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper in November ordered the destruction of any marijuana tainted with unapproved pesticides, including any products made with that marijuana.

Mountain High Suckers tested positive for imidacloprid and myclobutanil, both of which the Governor has called "threats to public safety" and the state has banned for use on cannabis, reports Michael Harthorne at Newser.

Mountain High Suckers apologized to its customers on Facebook.

"We decided to take a proactive step and submit samples of all of our products for pesticide testing so we can help make sure that our products are safe," the company posted. "Going forward, we will be voluntarily submitting every concentrate batch we make for full pesticide screening before we make products."

The federal Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) hasn't ruled on what pesticides are safe for use on marijuana, since the crop remains illegal at the federal level, being classified as a Schedule I controlled substance.

U.S.: Study Finds Uneven Pesticide Restrictions On Growing Legal Marijuana


Marijuana may be legal in your state for medicinal and recreational use, but are toxic pesticides used in its production?

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A study released on Wednesday of the 23 states and the District of Columbia that have legalized marijuana either for medical or recreational use finds a patchwork of state laws and evolving policy that define allowed pesticide use and management practices in cannabis production. This variety of state law is occurring in the absence of federal registration of pesticide use for cannabis production because of its classification as a narcotic under federal law.

The investigation, "Pesticide Use in Marijuana Production: Safety Issues and Sustainable Options," evaluates the state laws governing pesticide use in cannabis production where it is legalized.

"The use of pesticides in the cultivation of cannabis has health implications for those growing the crop, and for users who are exposed to toxic residues through inhalation, ingestion, and absorption through the skin," said Jay Feldman, executive director of Beyond Pesticides. "The good news is that five states and DC have adopted rules that require marijuana to be grown with practices that prevent the use of pesticides.

"State officials have an opportunity to restrict all pesticide use at the front end of a growing market, require the adoption of an organic system plan, and set a course to protect health and the environment," Feldman said.

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