Many California marijuana products failing safety tests

Galtero Lara
Setiembre 14, 2018

Nearly one-fifth of all legal marijuana products submitted for testing to the California government since July 1 have been rejected, frequently for not being strong enough, according to data released Tuesday by the state's Bureau of Cannabis Control said Tuesday.

The majority of the products that failed tests, however, are not blocked from placement on pot shop shelves.

Since testing regulations went into full swing there on July 1, labs have examined almost 11,000 batches of products ranging from buds to oils and edibles. A total of 1,904 batches failed the tests.

The remaining failures were largely linked to unacceptable levels of pesticide residues and the presence of other impurities, such as bacteria and mold. Sometimes failure to pass simply means a labeling change is required, but in other instances the product must be destroyed, the AP said.

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Some people in the cannabis industry believe a lot of the failed tests are due to the state's strict requirements, and argue that their products are subject to undue scrutiny.

Some lab officials say a large number of potentially harmful species of mold and yeast can go undetected in pot products because they are not now covered in state guidelines. The association also complained that the testing was costly, noting that small marijuana farms were getting hit with testing fees of up to $10,000.

As California has rolled out its recreational marijuana program this year, concerns have lingered that much of the state's cannabis business remains in the black market.

"Mandatory statewide testing is a new thing and it's going to take some time for everything to run smoothly, but on the whole we're pleased with how things are progressing", Bureau of Cannabis Control spokesman Alex Traverso told the AP.

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