Into the weeds: What is in your cannabis?

by | May 7, 2023 | Uncategorized

If you consume cannabis, do you know what’s in your products? Does it matter?

Well, with unregulated, illegal cannabis, there are no guarantees and it comes with risks.

In fact, Health Canada warns that illegal and unregulated cannabis products can contain contaminants and health hazards including bacteria, mould, heavy metals, pesticides and fillers cut into cannabis.

They could also contain zero THC – THC being the part of cannabis that gets someone high – or conversely, a very high amount of THC that could make the consumer ill. Sadly, there have been reports of children being hospitalized, particularly after consuming illegal edible cannabis products due to the very high levels of THC.

Legal cannabis products, on the other hand, must state exactly what they contain. They are tested and quality controlled to make sure they have accurate amounts of THC and CBD, and don’t contain dangerous levels of contaminants. Though CBD isn’t what gets someone high, it can affect the brain and may alter the effects of THC.

To know that your cannabis is legal, purchase it from an authorized retailer and look for these key signs on the package:

  • Plain, child-resistant packaging.
  • A small excise stamp, which is a different colour in each province and territory.
  • An official health warning message in a yellow rectangle, in English and French.
  • A red-and-black standardized cannabis symbol.
  • If it’s an edible, it must include nutrition facts and no more than 10 mg of THC per package.

Ultimately, just like most of us don’t need to risk buying moonshine, we can also choose to buy cannabis products from a licenced retailer.

Find more information at canada.ca/cannabis

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