Ever since recreational marijuana was legalized in Colorado, there has been concern and confusion over how to regulate cannabis infused edibles. With the new industry booming, proper use of edibles has been a recent concern. Each person processes THC (the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana) differently, so defining what a single dose should be has been difficult. Oregon has determined that 5mg is their single dose, while Washington and Colorado allow for double this amount with 10mg considered a single adult dose. It’s very easy to eat too much and the effects can take hours to take effect and last for hours after that. The “start low, go slow” slogan has only begun to be advertised and adult users are now getting a better understanding on how to consume their goodies.
Proper Labeling of Edibles
The next step in this process has been to enforce proper labeling so that candy or marijuana infused edibles in general are not accidentally mistaken for regular food when out of the packaging. This campaign involves putting a diamond with the letters THC in large letters on cannabis infused food. This is very hard to do with some candy, in particular marijuana gummy bears. This won’t be an issue though, because a new regulation passed last week that will ban marijuana gummy bears from being made and sold in Colorado. According to hospitals, the cases of children accidentally consuming attractive marijuana edibles has gone up. Lawmakers have been contemplating ways to prevent this from happening.
Adapting to the Ban on Marijuana Gummy Bears
In 2014, House Bill 1366 was passed in Colorado, which required lawmakers to create regulations regarding edibles. Last week one of those regulations was passed into law, as Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a bill that bans the production and sale of marijuana infused edibles that come in “the form of animals, people and fruit.” The regulation is designed to ban candy that is attractive to children. Apparently candy in these shapes are more likely to appeal to a child. It may be sad for those who love marijuana gummy bears and other goodies that will now no longer be available but if it helps to prevent future damaging accidents, it may be for the best.
The new labeling regulations have been difficult for some marijuana edibles manufacturers to figure out. Luckily, a group called the Capsule Consulting Group has formed and they are helping businesses to adapt to and comply with the new laws. The group has equipment, machinery and experience and they are helping companies to have a smoother transition.
Skepticism of the Ban
High Times have suggested that the changes are “A purely political move which will do nothing to curb accidental ingestion of cannabis edibles by children.” They continue, stating, “an unsupervised toddler will eat a cannabis candy regardless of whether it’s shaped like a bear or a star, taking no heed of a THC stamp or warning labels, so the responsibility for any accidental ingestion by a young child falls on the parents or guardians.” It’s very true, that responsibility lies in the hands of the parents, when it comes to keeping dangerous items such as bear-shaped edibles away from children. Unfortunately, not every parent is responsible and accidents happen in life, so even if the law protects a few children, it can’t be all bad.
Evidence of the effects of the law will have to be evaluated over the coming year. The law went into effect on July 1st. It is expected that, though production on cannabis gummy bears has been halted, the current stock already on shelves will be available until supplies run out.