Arkansas inflated marijuana potency lawsuit moves from civil to federal court

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An Arkansas lawsuit alleging that three medical marijuana cultivators and a testing lab in the state colluded to overstate THC potency levels in products has been moved to federal court.

According to Law360, the lawsuit, originally filed in February in Pulaski County Circuit Court, contends a multimillion-dollar arrangement was set up among the conspirators to defraud patients.

Growers Bold Team, Osage Creek Cultivation and NSMC-OPCO as well as testing lab Steep Hill were all named in the civil lawsuit, which contends their products tested 25% higher than other labs.

The suit also accuses Steep Hill of inflating THC potency results to incentivize companies to hire the lab operator.

Questionable lab standards, enforcement and the practice of “lab shopping,” where cultivators seek higher potencies, have been problematic in several other states.

In an effort to nationally standardize testing, two established companies in the cannabis space – Michigan-headquartered ACT Labs and California-based SC Labs – recently launched the Trust In Testing Certification.

According to a news release, the certification outlines stringent lab quality requirements to ensure brands and consumers trust testing data.

A seal of approval denotes brands follow stricter guidelines, which ACT and SC contend will lessen the risk of business interruptions stemming from compliance issues and potentially damaging lawsuits.