Medibles Industry Thrives, Regulation Struggles to Keep Up in Washington
Marijuana-infused edibles are a popular alternative for consuming cannabis for those who don’t want to smoke, or even vaporize. They can be transported easier than marijuana itself and the effects tend to last longer than smoked cannabis.
For this reason they will always be popular in areas where medical marijuana is legal, like Washington State. The problem is that the regulation of medibles isn’t keeping pace with how fast the industry is growing.
One of the things about prohibition is that is gives the illusion of control when in fact the government has little control over illegal markets. Lack of control means lack of regulation, which leaves suppliers and makers of medibles in the dark as to what standard to follow.
Medibles come in many forms, from cookies and brownies to candy and sodas. While they all contain marijuana, they also contain other ingredients, and there are really no rules when it comes to those ingredients.
"You have people making products that are not regulated in any way, with no instructions for how to be stored, no expiration date," said Jim Chaney, 27, who has produced infused chai-flavored drinks and capsules under the name Dream Cream. "The state is just failing to do any kind of quality health inspection."
Is it really that difficult for state officials to regulate food products that contain marijuana? The law in the state concerning medical marijuana is vague in some areas to be sure, but this is a matter of public health. Of course, medical marijuana itself is a public health issue, and officials in many states couldn’t seem to care less about that.
Real and sensible regulation will only come with full legalization. Until then, many in the industry just have to play it by ear.
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