The Colorado pesticide problem is continuing to be an issue in 2016, but this time we’re hearing more complaints from within the industry that the state’s laws are unreasonably harsh. While heavy regulation of pesticides used on the pot in Colorado sounds like a win for the industry, there have been dozens and dozens of recalls on companies that have found themselves with little to no recourse but having their products destroyed. Many within the industry are celebrating that a new bill recently died in the state Senate that would have codified Governor Hickenlooper’s November executive order, that state agencies should remove and destroy any marijuana grown with unapproved pesticides.
While these laws are supposed to have the consumer’s safety in mind, many within the industry believe that they are both unreasonable and unconstitutional. It is not the government’s place to be seizing private property and destroying it. While I’m sure many of you are thinking that this is just growers and cannabis companies being greedy, they believe they are being held to an unreasonably high standard and they do have a bit of a point. As compared to most agricultural crops, cannabis in Colorado is facing a zero tolerance policy that doesn’t really exist with other crops. Instead of having a zero limit, other crops have an acceptable limit of most pesticides. The other big difference between the current cannabis laws and other crops is that growers in Colorado currently have virtually no way to appeal the detection of a pesticide in their products if they believe the test results were inaccurate.
As of now there are a few companies that are attempting to appeal the massive recalls they’ve had to deal with, but none of the decisions have been made yet in those processes. Edipure is a great example of a company that was hit incredibly hard last year with some of the biggest edible recalls in history. Edipure has been held responsible for these recalls despite the fact that a separate growing company would’ve been the ones to apply any unapproved pesticides. I think we all just want to have safe products for the consumers in our industry, but at the same time we shouldn’t burden our growers and companies with unreasonable expectations that other industries don’t face.