A California company is announcing this week that it has developed a new vape cartridge design that protects the cannabis oil inside from any contact with metal parts. The release of the new product comes as the cause for the rash of serious lung injuries associated with vaping continues to elude authorities.
The new cartridge, dubbed the MF-1000, is produced by Global Meds Outlet, a San Diego-based distributor of CBD products. Gino Ajodani, the president of the firm, tells High Times that the cartridge is constructed from high-heat PETG plastic that is proven to be free of arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury. Under California state regulations, cannabis products must be lab tested and meet standards for the presence of those four heavy metals before entering the retail market.
Ajodani says that the only metal part in the MF-1000 is its titanium heating coil. To prove that the metal-free cartridges actually contain no heavy metals, Global Meds Outlet took them to a cannabis testing lab to be analyzed. But no test procedure for testing hardware was in place, so Infinite Chemical Analysis Labs in San Diego developed one that used a concentrated nitric acid solution to break down the cartridge.
“They tested the nitric acid for heavy metals first,” Ajodani explains. “Then they dissolved the entire cartridge in the nitric acid, and then they tested the solution again.”
That analysis determined that the MF-1000 had no detectable levels arsenic, cadmium, lead, or mercury. To further validate the results, Ajodani says tests of filled cartridges revealed that cannabis oil was free of heavy metals after seven and 14 days in the cart. Global Meds Outlet plans to continue the testing for cartridges that have been filled for up to 120 days.
Lead Found in Cannabis Vape Cartridges
As reported by High Times in January, as the heavy metals testing standards were going into effect it was determined that many vape cartridges on the market were constructed with parts that contain heavy metals. When the cartridges were filled, the metals could leach into the oil through chemical action caused by acidic terpenes.
“And then you end up inhaling either chromium or lead or arsenic,” explains Ajodani.
But instead of ensuring that the cartridges they used were free of heavy metals, Ajodani claims that many cannabis manufacturers began gaming the lab tests, which have no standardized protocols in place. He says that by submitting cartridges to a testing lab on the day they are filled and requesting results in one day, manufacturers are avoiding any chance of heavy metals leaching into the cannabis oil before analysis.
But products often end up in customer’s hands long after that. Ajodani says that label information from a recent purchase of five different vape cartridges at a San Diego dispensary revealed that the products had been manufactured at least six months and up to 10 months previously, plenty of time for leaching to occur.
The MF-1000 carts are now available to manufacturers, with orders being filled within 10 days, according to Ajodani. The cartridges will only be sold in child-resistant packaging that includes several measures to prevent counterfeiting, including a holographic label and stamped serial number that can be verified by consumers online.
With cannabis vaping products under scrutiny for their safety and subject to bans in some jurisdictions, Ajodani says it’s time for the industry to ensure consumers don’t lose what many consider the most convenient way to enjoy cannabis.
“Let’s get the cartridges right,” he says. “Let’s get the tests done correctly.”