New labs sprouting up to test cannabis -- and the law

December 11, 2013

Grandaddy Purple, Blueberry Yum Yum and other pot products may now be legal for medical use in 20 states and the District of Columbia, but how do patients know what dose they're really getting and whether it's safe? Small labs are setting up shop -- some at their own legal peril -- to help patients find out, according to an article in Chemical & Engineering News, the weekly newsmagazine of the American Chemical Society.

Bethany Halford, senior editor at C&EN, explains that consumers expect tight quality control over more traditional pharmaceuticals that come in syrups, drops and pill form at the corner pharmacy. Dosage should be precise, and purity is demanded. Now that the use of medical marijuana -- and in Colorado and Washington, the buying of recreational pot -- is growing legally, labs to analyze the available products are cropping up.

The labs test for the potency of marijuana not only by analyzing the plant itself, but also edible products such as taffy, caramel and gum that contain the drug. They also look for mold, mildew and microbial contamination, as well as the presence of pesticides and solvents left behind during production. The article notes that these entrepreneurial chemists, while helping patients, are taking big risks and treading into untested legal territory. Although some states have legalized the purchase of the drug, possession of marijuana is still illegal under federal law.
-end-
The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 163,000 members, ACS is the world's largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

To automatically receive news releases from the American Chemical Society, contact newsroom@acs.org.

Follow us: TwitterFacebook

American Chemical Society

Related Marijuana Articles from Brightsurf:

Teen boys link marijuana use with more, better sex
Teen-age boys exposed to pro-cannabis advertising and social media posts are more likely than female peers to associate marijuana use with improving sexual activity, new research from Washington State University suggests.

Legal marijuana may be slowing reductions in teen marijuana use, study says
A longitudinal study of more than 230 teens and young adults in Washington state finds that teens may be more likely to use marijuana following legalization - with the proliferation of stores and increasing adult use of the drug -- than they otherwise would have been.

Does using marijuana affect a person's risk of stroke?
The jury's still out on whether the use of marijuana may increase the risk of stroke.

Marijuana use among older adults in US
Cannabis use apparently continues to increase among older adults in the U.S. based on findings reported in this research letter.

Is it hemp or marijuana? New scanner gives instant answer
Hemp is technically legal in Texas, but proving that hemp is not marijuana can be a hurdle, requiring testing in a licensed laboratory.

Recreational marijuana availability in Oregon and use among adolescents
New research from the Prevention Research Center of the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation suggests that legalization and greater retail availability of recreational marijuana is positively associated with marijuana use among adolescents.

Marijuana detected in homicide victims nearly doubles
Researchers at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health assessed the time trends in alcohol and marijuana detected in homicide victims and found that the prevalence of marijuana almost doubled, increasing from 22 percent in 2004 to 42 percent in 2016.

Vaping of marijuana on the rise among teens
Findings from the 2019 Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey demonstrate the appeal of vaping to teens, as seen in the increased prevalence of marijuana use as well as nicotine vaping.

Use changes after recreational marijuana legalization
How the legalization of recreational marijuana in some states was associated with changes inĀ marijuana use and cannabis use disorder compared to other states from 2008 to 2016 was the focus of this study.

Teen marijuana use may have next-generation effects
A new study by the University of Washington's Social Development Research Group shows how a parent's use of marijuana, past or present, can influence their child's substance use and well-being.

Read More: Marijuana News and Marijuana Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.