Emerald Cup Winners Disqualified For Pesticide Contaminants

Emerald Cup Winners Disqualified For Pesticide Contaminants

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Several winners from last December’s Emerald Cup have been dethroned after they were found to contain pesticides. Though the event took place over a month ago in Sonoma County, California, it took awhile to put all contestants through thorough testing at SC Labs.

The problem was relatively small in the flower categories. Of the 735 flower samples received by Emerald Cup judges, only 40 were found to contain pesticides (that’s about 5 percent), as reported by The Press Democrat. But that problem was exacerbated in the concentrates categories. 25 percent of 263 hash samples were disqualified, most of them for containing pesticides.

There may be a scientific reason why pesticides were much more likely to be found in concentrates than flowers. Alec Dixon of SC Labs told the Democrat that the blasting process doesn’t just concentrate cannabinoids and terpenes, but whatever other chemical components could be in the flower. “Concentrates are where it all comes to life,” Dixon said. “It’s where total truth comes out because you’re also concentrating whatever pesticides are there.”

The find comes because of the Emerald Cup’s dedication to having pure, healthy products in its competition. Not only does the Cup not allow for solvent-derived extracts, it also claims to be the first cup to disqualify based on the pesticide content. Other cups, including Chalice California, have also adopted the policy. High Times Cannabis Cups, so far, have not.

Though Emerald Cup officials wanted a clean competition, they were surprised at how much pesticide they found in their entries. Emerald Cup founder Tim Blake said that he was “dumbfounded that we’d see this [pesticide use] at that level,” and that the cup was “going to have to be very careful about that in the future.”

The wave of disqualifications weeks after the winners were announced has been a major upset. In the dry sieve category, the third place winner (which wasn’t even listed on the Emerald Cup website) climbed up to first place after Berry White and Platinum Cookies, both from Dry Sift Jedi Resin Ranch Extraction, were both disqualified. The newly crowned winner was Xenu (Hippy Slayer x R6) by Sonoma County’s Cult Classics Seed.

Photo via Flickr user Beverly Yuen Thompson

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