Council committee discusses steps to keep pesticides out of cannabis

Friday, September 2, 2016

The Metropolitan King County Council’s Health, Housing and Human Services Committee heard from the County’s Chief Medical Officer and other health experts on the proposed legislation to establish a prohibited pesticides testing program for marijuana retailers.

The goal of the ordinance is to ensure that marijuana products being sold in King County do not contain banned pesticides and to make consumers aware of the chemicals going into their bodies when using pot and pot-based products.

Dr. Jeffrey Duchin King County’s Chief Medical Officer, was joined by Dr. Sunil Aggarwal, MultiCare Institute of Research and Innovation, in speaking to the committee on the potential threat to public health and safety caused by prohibited pesticides in marijuana products being available at retail marijuana stores.

Those using marijuana for medical conditions could be impacted by the pesticides used in the cultivation and processing of marijuana.

Voters supported the legalization of recreational use of marijuana in 2012 with the adoption of Initiative 502, and marijuana and other cannabis-based products have been available to medical patients prior to the passage of I-502.

Under the proposed legislation, a new program in the Seattle / King County Department of Public Health would obtain marijuana products from licensed marijuana retailers and test those products for prohibited pesticides.

Public Health would create a website to inform the public about products that were purchased from county retail stores that contain prohibited pesticides, and would also provide the results to the LCB.

The committee is expected to act on the legislation at its September 20 meeting.


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