Beginning next month, all medical marijuana extracts, edibles, and other infused products will be required to undergo potency testing for THC and other cannabinoids. Medical marijuana flowers have undergone similar testing since last year, but state lawmakers were waiting until they believed laboratories were up to snuff to mandate the testing, according to the Marijuana Enforcement Division and a report from Westword.
Extracts which hit the shelves before November 1 won’t require the same scrutiny, but any cannabis product distributed afterward will undergo what’s known as proficiency testing, wherein samples from the same batches of concentrates or edibles will be analyzed by several different laboratories, and their results compared to each other.
Not only will the tests confirm that the THC and CBD content advertised is correct, they’ll also ensure that THC is distributed equally throughout the product. Additional cannabinoids tested by the labs will include THCa, CBDa, and CBN.
There is no limit on THC content in medical marijuana edibles, but labs will test to see if products are within 15 percent of the levels they claim.
Potency testing, of course, is not entirely new for the state. Extracts and edibles on the recreational market have been required to undergo potency testing since 2014. But medical marijuana undergoes separate regulations and SB 260 required that overseers of the state’s MMJ program wait until labs were proven to be proficient.
There’s some question as to whether that’s actually happened. Bugi Perrone, co-founder of state-certified testing site Gobi-Labs told Westword that it’s hard to get every lab on the same page and consistent. “Every lab has its own testing and extraction testing methods,” she said. “And every edibles company uses different extraction methods depending on how the edible is made and which part of the edible is medicated.”
In addition, many MMJ extractors and edible makers have been doing their own unmandated potency testing for years. “I’d find it hard to believe that a medical company is not testing products now for potency,” said Incredibles Edibles co-founder Bob Eschino. “You can’t really make an accurate product unless they’re doing the testing… If you’re making a 300-milligram product, you want that right. If you’re not doing that already and you’re in this industry, then shame on you.”