Move afoot to test Arizona’s medical cannabis for mold, pesticides

A Republican lawmaker has persuaded nearly the entire Arizona legislature to sign on in support of his proposal to require medical marijuana to be tested for mold and agricultural chemicals.

The proposal from Sen. Sonny Borrelli would appropriate $2 million from the state’s huge medical marijuana fund to do the testing.

Borrelli has 78 co-sponsors for the measure, including the Republican and Democratic leaders in the House and Senate. There are 90 members of the legislature.

Borrelli’s proposal would require the state Department of Agriculture to test for pesticides and other chemicals, paid for with the $2 million from the MMJ fund.

The Health Services Department would set up testing to ensure marijuana is free of mold and also would potentially write rules on potency testing.

Laura Bianchi, who heads the cannabis department at Scottsdale-based Rose Law Group, said the lack of a testing requirement is a “huge gap” in the state’s MMJ program, which launched in late 2012.

She noted that many retailers are doing testing either in-house or through third-party labs.

Because the lawmaker’s proposal amends a law approved by voters in 2010, it will require approval from 75% of the legislature.

– Associated Press

7 comments on “Move afoot to test Arizona’s medical cannabis for mold, pesticides
  1. Jeff Jamieson on

    Interesting because no MMJ Product Liability insurance carrier will write a policy in AZ without testing all products currently. Many clients and prospective clients state that there is no law for testing currently and I respond that’s fine… but the insurance companies are the ones defending these potential claims and they demand compliance in testing.

    Reply
  2. Charlotte Kortum on

    If AZ. would let patients grow their own plants it would be regulated by the patient and the patient would know EVERYTHING that went into their plants!

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    • Ma Dang on

      but if they were to give some to other patients, then we have a problem.
      I like the idea of State Sponsored testing (and they are willing to pay for it!), I wish Cali would go this way, it would eliminate fraud and standardize procedures. And the state will pay not the grower !!!!!!

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    • Sickofcorporatecannabis on

      I agree.. i worked at the biggest cannabis greenhouse in Az for 6 months. My first job in pricessing was to pull out bugs, dead or alive. Mold happened iften. And the place was unsafe for workers. The management didnt know they were doing….and still dont from stories being circulated. People can grow their own medicine.

      Reply
  3. Brett Von Bergen on

    Don’t worry, eventually ALL states will have regulatory bodies that will have legislative power in the determination for types and extents of testing on these products. Caregivers are being marginalized or least ones that aren’t apt to bring their operations up to a professional and technical level. The time has come for cannabis to be brought into a legitimate market, by legitimate professionals. Just because a patient “grows their own” doesn’t necessarily mean they know what their putting into their gardens. It would be nice if they were that competent, but from my experience that is a haphazard assumption, most don’t know anything about biology or chemistry let alone agricultural practices. It should be regulated to the extent that these people are pushed out of the industry altogether, which is currently happening as more and more regulation comes down the pipeline.

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  4. Oatsuzn on

    I hope this amendment is passed and we can get mandatory testing added to regulations. I’d love to see some of the competent big name labs like Evio setting up shop in AZ. Evio already made the news in Oregon last year when they caught a bad batch that was tainted with fungus. The batch was recalled from a local dispensary and lives may have been saved.

    Reply

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