What Edible Marijuana Treats Did Washington State Ban? Weed Lollipops Are Out, Brownies Are A-OK
The second state to fully legalize marijuana for recreational use (don't worry Colorado, you'll always be number one), Washington, has laid down new rules on edible marijuana. And, sad to say for the sweet-toothed stoners among us, a bunch of different tasty treats are going out the window. This is thanks to new guidelines released by Washington's Liquor Control Board Wednesday, the state agency tasked with regulating the newly-legal drug.
That's not to say the decision is outrageous, or necessarily wrong. Since the legalization of marijuana in Colorado, a lot of attention's been focused on children getting sick from inadvertently eating marijuana-infused treats. This isn't solely an issue that's been brought about by outright legalization; having medical marijuana edibles around in your house similarly ups the risk that a child could accidentally ingest some.
But with the weed business booming in Washington, as Seattle's lone outlet Cannabis City ran out of supply just three days after they opened shop, it was only a matter of time before some new regulations started hitting the market.
In: Cookies, Brownies, and Other Baked Goods
Those of you who like to kick back and nurse a rich chocolate brownie now and again — yes, nurse, because you should NEVER EVER thoughtlessly eat an entire one, not that I'd know what that's like — can rest easy. The Liquor Control Board is letting those baked goods slide, provided that they have packaging which clearly lists the number of doses each one contains.
In the event that a single item contains multiple doses, according to the Spokesman Review, it has to be segmented to indicate the proper amount of a single dose. And importantly, the active drug has to be distributed evenly throughout, so that you don't get a cookie that's half-meh and half-mind blowing.
Out: Lollipops, Gummy Candies, Cotton Candy
The Liquor Control Board has, however, cut out a decent number of the kinds of marijuana edibles you'd expect to see on the market. Essentially, these types of cannabis candy are being banned because of concerns that they inordinately appeal to children. Gummies and brightly-colored lollipops, for example, or the sickly-sweet siren's song of cotton candy.
In my experience, I'll say one thing in defense of this — things like marijuana brownies and cookies tend to reek of the stuff in a way that I haven't founds lollipops or gummy candies to parallel. It does seem reasonable that a child would have an easier time, or at the very least a slightly better chance of realizing something was wrong with the smelly brownie sitting in front of them.
In any event, up and coming marijuana edible businesses will also now be under restrictions similar to the tobacco industry — any packaging and labeling that could be distinctly appealing to children, according to Reuters, is also disallowed.
The Loophole: Medicinal Marijuana Clinics
Despite authorized recreational outlets being subject to these rules, people visiting any of Washington's medicinal dispensaries may still be able to find some of these banned candies. That's because the Liquor Control Board doesn't have regulatory authority over those locations.
Of course, it's still a bit early to predict how the medicinal marijuana industry will thrive in a local economy that permits fully-legal recreational sales. There's always the risk that as legalization spreads, and shops more more numerous, the medical marijuana section of the industry could bottom out — this is a big reason that medicinal clinics often oppose full legalization.
But at least they'll be the only place in Washington to get a lollipop you can suck until you're sky-high. That may not sound like my idea of a good time — this blackberry-flavored dark chocolate bar, I'd say, sounds a lot more desirable — but it's nonetheless a loophole they're probably thrilled to have.