Maine Cannabis Industry Assails Proposed Kief Ban

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Caregivers, dispensaries and medical marijuana patients in Maine are pressuring the state government not to proceed with a proposed ban on kief.

Lawmakers have proposed a bill intended to “clarify” regulations in the Maine Medical Marijuana Act of 2009, which legalized the plant for medical purposes. The bill would outlaw the possession and sale of kief, which is the resinous crystal from marijuana flowers that often accumulates in the bottom of packaging or storage containers.

Many medical marijuana dispensaries sell kief because it simply falls off of the plant’s flowers and leaves during processing.

State officials would not elaborate on why they hope to ban the substance, but industry professionals said at a meeting this week that the ban would be unworkable due to kief’s regular occurrence in the cannabis trade.

The proposed bill would also allow the state’s Department of Health and Human Services to seize and test soil and plants being used by caregivers, and let the state’s revenue division access their information for tax compliance reasons. It would also allow nurse practitioners to prescribe medical marijuana.