A report shows that high-potency cannabis products are creating new regulatory risks in Washington state.
The report, based on government-seized samples, shows that THC levels have skyrocketed in the last few years, from around 4% to more than 15%.
Cannabis plants are bred to contain more of the psychoactive substance THC but some concentrates are often labeled as 60% to 99% content, according to Bloomberg.
What Does The Report Say?
The Cannabis Observer leaked a draft scientific report on the public health challenges of high-THC cannabis, which is scheduled to be released at the end of the year.
The report recommends policies such as preventing new users from starting to consume these products and calls for companies to provide more information to consumers.
It does not recommend a limit on THC levels, although it suggests that it might be more feasible in the future.
It was legalized as a plant, and now it has become something else. There is a burden of proof, according to Beatriz Carlini, who oversees cannabis research and education at the University of Washington s Addictions, Drug Alcohol Institute. Carlini said that there is robust evidence showing that higher-THC marijuana increases the risk of addiction and psychiatric disorders.
Carlini said that the report will recommend tax increases on products with more than 35% THC and the prohibition of advertising and promotion of such products. She strongly recommends that limits on THC content be defined in the very early stages of legalization, and that they will be increased by the age requirement for their purchase to 25, and that limits on THC content be defined in the very early stages of legalization.
Concerns for High-Potency Products: The Perception Gap Within The Market
Carlini said that when asked to rate how concerned they were about the risks of high THC concentrations on a scale of 1 to 5, the responses from scientists, government employees, health care providers and prevention agencies ranged from 3.8 to 4.2.
Marijuana industry representatives only rated their level of concern at 1.4, while cannabis users doubled that level at 2.8, she said.
As researchers warn that high-THC weed could cause more people around the world to become addicted, cannabis operators agree that consumer safety should take priority over THC potency.
Jill Ellsworth, founder and CEO of Willow Industries, said companies could focus on education about cannabinoids and the entourage effects of different terpenes.
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