Is Your Cannabis Toxic?
Did you know pesticide testing is not mandatory for cannabis products sold in Washington state?
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates pesticide use in the agricultural market, which in turn is overseen on the state and local level. However, because cannabis is not Federally legal, it is not recognized as an agricultural market and in Washington State, pesticide testing is not required on cannabis products.
Even with state pesticide and fertilizer regulations, testing is not mandatory, so there is no enforcement to ensure consumer protection. This leaves you with a dangerous grey area when it comes to safely consuming cannabis. How do you know the products you’re consuming aren’t toxic? This can be especially concerning for those who consume concentrates.
It is said that California has the strictest regulations for cannabis production, however the 2017 statistics published by Jan Conway on Statista showed that 66% of the cannabis produced in California contained Myclobutanil, a chemical used as a fungicide that is also a known carcinogen. Myclobutanil has been banned for cannabis production in Canada, Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and Oklahoma but what pesticides are allowed in our local markets?
It’s a known fact that Washington state imposes the highest taxes in the nation on our cannabis industry. Take that and the pressure growers face to yield large crops to meet consumer demand; it forces many companies to take shortcuts if they want to make any profit at all. The fact is, a majority of cannabis growers in Washington use pesticides, and even “safe” pesticides can be dangerous in concentrated levels.
What pesticides are being used? Are all pesticides dangerous? Are there safe pesticides? What other toxins might be in your cannabis?
The Washington State Liquor Cannabis Control Board (WSLCB) and the Department of Agriculture (WSDA) released criteria for pesticide use in cannabis production which you can view here. In addition, the WSDA recently released an updated list of allowed pesticides for marijuana production in April. You can view that full list here.
The risks associated with consuming pesticides in cannabis products is unknown, and even with regulations in place, many growers and producer/processors get away with selling potentially toxic cannabis everyday. The good news is there are companies in Washington that have taken it upon themselves to test their products to ensure they are providing clean cannabis to retailers and to consumers.
Here are the certifications to look for to ensure you are consuming clean cannabis.
CLEAN GREEN CERTIFIED
The federal government prohibits certifying cannabis as “organic” and does not recognize cannabis as an agricultural crop. Clean Green provides recognition to organic cannabis products.
Established in California in 2004, the Clean Green Certified program has since expanded to 7 other states and is now the number one certifier nationwide for cannabis grown sustainably and organically.
Clean Green has strict eligibility requirements, thorough inspections and required producer staff training to be completed before the company can receive Clean Green certification. In the end, Clean Green certifies that certified cannabis is provided to the consumers in a clean, safe and sustainable manner from seed to the final packaged product.
TESTED WITH CONFIDENCE
Confidence Analytics, a Certified Cannabis Testing laboratory, developed a program whereby like-minded cannabis brands that commit to holistic practices and invest in non-compulsory testing, can receive the Tested with Confidence Program™ label to display on their products. Companies that participate in the Program voluntarily commit to testing representative samples of every batch of finished cannabis product for pesticides and contaminants – a test not required in Washington State – and every sample must pass the State requirements to be labeled Tested with Confidence.
When you see the Tested with Confidence Program™ logo it means what you see is what you get:
- Accurate cannabinoid and terpene labeling.
- Does not contain harmful levels of contaminants per Washington State standards.
- Meets or exceeds Washington State quality assurance requirements for pesticides.
GENERAL USE COMPLIANT
General Use Compliant products are required to meet high level standards which also includes requirements for testing by a third-party testing lab certified by the WSLCB. The product is tested for heavy metals and pesticides. Products that are certified General Use Compliant are approved for medical use and considered #cleancannabis.
CLEAN CANNABIS AT CANNA WEST
The team at Canna West Seattle is dedicated to sourcing the cleanest products on the market. Not only do we carry Clean Green Certified, Tested with Confidence and General Use Compliant, we also carry a large inventory of pesticide free brands that produce their products using approved organic pesticides or natural pest and fungus control methods, like biopesticides. In fact, the majority of our products are considered #cleancannabis products.
Visit our store and speak with a budtender to learn more about our clean cannabis products. Cannabis is a lifestyle, so let’s keep it clean!
For all natural and organic CBD hemp products, visit our Culture Shop.