US Senate committee calls for national marijuana testing program

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee wants to establish national marijuana testing protocols, according to a new report.

However, it’s not exactly a pro-cannabis industry move.

The committee members are interested in data on cannabis to help inform “substance abuse prevention efforts, public health policy and law enforcement tactics across the federal government,” according to the report.

The committee is calling for the National Institute on Drug Abuse to work with the Drug Enforcement Administration and other law enforcement arms to “facilitate and ultimately fund a National Testing Program for Schedule I Marijuana-Derived Products in U.S. distribution.”

According to the report, the agencies will be test “samples seized by law enforcement and of samples collected by non-DEA approved sources to provide robust reliable data that can inform policy.”

The report doesn’t include any details about how such a testing program would work, according to Forbes, which was first to report on the Senate panel’s request.

But the document does emphasize that lawmakers are dismayed there’s so little solid scientific information about cannabis and laments high barriers to research on marijuana. The committee further directed NIDA to report back on those barriers and how more data can be gathered.

That runs contrary to efforts by the Department of Justice under Attorney General Jeff Sessions to block further MJ-related research permits.