Since January 1, 2018, all cannabis and cannabis products other than flower (collectively “cannabis goods”), have been subject to the testing, packaging and labeling requirements imposed by MAUCRSA.  There was a transition period, whereby retailers with product on hand as of January 1, 2018 were still able to sell cannabis goods that did not meet the new testing, packaging and labeling requirements, but any new product was required to be tested and properly packaged and labeled.

Last week we saw fire sales at nearly every licensed dispensary attempting to get rid of all noncompliant product, from $1 edibles to $12 eighths.  The media has reported that anywhere between “tens of millions” and $350 million of cannabis goods will be destroyed as a result of the July 1, 2018 roll out date.

Organizations statewide requested that the BCC come up with some alternative to destruction.  With so many patients left to turn to the black market because of the high cost of regulatory implementation and taxes, it is tough to understand why the state would refuse to allow dispensaries to donate to charitable organizations.  After all, Prop 215 is still a viable option for non-commercial activities, such as distributing cannabis goods for free to those most in need.

To make matters worse, the state adopted this strange policy:  any noncompliant cannabis goods manufactured or harvested prior to January 1, 2018 in the possession of a distributor, but not owned by the distributor could be returned to the cultivator or manufacturer, who in turn, could send it back out to the distributor for testing (why the distributor could not simply arrange for testing in one step is beyond us).  Noncompliant cannabis goods owned by a distributor must be destroyed, just as cannabis goods at retail.

Keep in mind that all cannabis goods harvested or manufactured after January 1, 2018 have been subject to certain testing, packaging and labeling requirements as well as maximum THC concentrations for manufactured cannabis products.

Here are the Basics:

  • Retailers may only accept prepackaged cannabis goods, properly tested, packaged and labeled and within the maximum THC restrictions below.
  • All cannabis goods must be in child-resistant packaging before they are delivered to retail – the exit packaging is not a substitute.
  • Edibles may only have 10 mg THC per serving and 100 mg THC per package
  • Non-edible manufactured cannabis products may contain a maximum of 1,000 mg for recreational products and 2,000 mg for medicinal products
  • Edibles cannot resemble people, animals, fruits or other common foods.

Testing Regulations at a Glance:

As of January 1, 2018 required testing included: 

  • Cannabinoids
  • Moisture content (flower only)
  • Category II Residual Solvents and Processing Chemicals Testing (except for flower)
  • Category I Residual Pesticides Testing
  • Microbial Impurities Testing (A. fumigatus, A. flavus, A. niger, A. terreus)
  • Microbial Impurities Testing (Escherichia coli and Salmonella spp.) (except for edibles)
  • Homogeneity Testing of Edible Cannabis Products (edibles only)

As of July 1, 2018, required testing includes:

  • Category I Residual Solvents and Processing Chemicals Testing (except flower)
  • Category II Residual Pesticides Testing
  • Foreign Material Testing

More to come as of January 1, 2018:

  • Terpenoids Testing
  • Mycotoxins Testing
  • Heavy Metals Testing
  • Water Activity Testing (except manufactured inhalable cannabis products)