All Oregon Pot Must Now Be Tested For Pesticides

Photo by Dale Shirley

As of Thursday, the Oregon Health Authority is requiring that all cannabis product batches be tested for pesticides, as the state’s temporary rules governing pesticides expire and permanent rules take over.

In keeping with its reputation for being the strictest state in the union when it comes pesticides, the permanent rules also apply to untested product that was collected for sampling before August 30.

The Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), which oversees the state’s legal weed issues, explained in a notice:

“In October 2016, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission issued a finding that the pesticide testing requirement would be lowered to a minimum of one-third of batches of usable marijuana within every harvest lot, due to insufficient lab capacity.”

When the state proposed those possible changes to testing protocols for cannabis, they sought public input. Public response to keep the testing rules as they were, and not lower them, was overwhelming.

Oregonians, per Oregon Cannabis Connection, want the state to help protect the public from contaminated products.

“Of course, we do. I’ve undergone chemo for breast cancer. Cannabis helps my appetite and my sleep patterns, which are totally off,” Helen G. told High Times in a telephone interview. “If the cannabis I ingest is not clean, I could develop serious problems.”

In the past several months, significant changes have occurred that have increased the lab testing capacity to ensure a steady flow of product through the supply chain.

However, try as they might, as early as this past June contaminated weed was still being sold to consumers in Oregon.

That may have been partly due to the fact that, as of last October, only five labs were accredited to test for pesticides; today there are nearly 10.

Many believe even more are needed for the amount of testing that will need to be done.

Also, the Oregon Health Authority’s most recent testing rules increased by 50 percent the amount of usable marijuana that can be tested together in a batch.

“We Oregonians want, need, clean cannabis products and that means free of pesticides. We want the Health Authority to test everything,” added Helen.

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