New state regulations requiring that commercial cannabis – both medical and recreational – be tested for pesticide contamination could result in a major price increase in Oregon’s marijuana market.
The Oregon Health Authority has thus far released a list of 59 pesticides that labs will have to test flower for before harvests can be released for sale, according to KTVZ. The cost of testing will likely be passed on to consumers in order to maintain profitability for growers and dispensaries, so the only question at this point is how much prices will go up.
One lab vice president at CannAlytics estimated that prices will jump between 50-100% next year.
The testing requirements go into effect in June, which means that there will be a surge in demand next summer for laboratory services. And depending on how much inventory passes, it could also mean a sudden dearth of supply for dispensaries (regular rec shops aren’t expected to come online until next fall).
One of the problems for existing labs, according to KTVZ, is many of them don’t yet have the necessary equipment to test for all the pesticides identified by the state. One lab director estimated his business will need to spend upwards of $500,000 on new equipment.