Curio fined $26,000 for selling cannabis retrieved from dumpster, other offenses

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(This story has been updated with comment from Curio co-founder Wendy Bronfein.)

Multistate operator Curio Wellness was fined $26,000 by Maryland regulators after reviewing video footage of employees at its flagship Maryland store retrieving cannabis from a dumpster that was later sold to medical patients and consumers.

The company on Feb. 16 signed a consent order from the Maryland Cannabis Administration (MCA) acknowledging that workers at its Far & Dotter store in Timonium, just north of Baltimore, engaged in several health and safety violations and ignored standard operating procedures to mitigate potential contamination, dispose waste and properly log developments related to the incident.

According to the consent order, an inventory manager at the store sent video footage to the MCA in August 2023 depicting that 64 units of Amnesia OG flower, sealed in jars, were in the dumpster for more than 41 hours.

A general manager instructed employees to retrieve the marijuana from the dumpster and return it to inventory.

According to the consent order, Metrc logs indicated the product was sold to 24 medical marijuana patients and 18 recreational consumers between July 28, 2023, and August 3, 2023, for a total of $3,174.50.

The whistleblower was terminated days before emailing the allegations to the MCA.

No adverse effects of consuming the batch of cannabis have been reported to the company or state regulators, according to the consent order.

Curio co-founder Wendy Bronfein said the company took immediate action to address the situation, including launching an internal investigation and implementing additional employee training.

“Non-adherence to safety and compliance procedures is not taken lightly, nor tolerated,” she told MJBizDaily via email.

“Curio prides itself on trusted relationships with our customers and employees and strives to maintain excellence throughout all operations, with a high commitment to safety and compliance procedures.”

Beyond paying the $26,000 fine, Curio has been ordered to:

  • Submit monthly green-waste logs to the MCA for six months.
  • Send monthly scale-calibration and cleaning logs to the MCA for six months.
  • Retrain all staff on proper green-waste procedures and provide proof.
  • Assume all costs associated with the MCA mandates.

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