Using pesticides on plants grown for human consumption has long been a controversial issue. Pesticide use in cannabis production is a little more disconcerting, because the plant is not only consumed, but also smoked. Over the summer, the Colorado Department of Agriculture (CDA) suspended several local Denver grow operations for using unauthorized pesticides on marijuana and held products for later testing. Organic marijuana will soon be on the rise, as consumers are shaken by the CDA’s findings.
There are some pesticides approved for use on plants like corn, wheat, and soybeans, but, because marijuana is illegal at the federal level, the CDA can’t legally say which chemicals are safe. A majority of the substances used by dispensaries in Denver are considered nontoxic and don’t have to be approved to be used, but not every dispensary follows this rule. The CDA continues to investigate several Denver marijuana businesses for using potentially harmful chemicals to help their growing processes. These companies face fines, and potential shutdowns if their products continue to fail the state’s pesticide tests.
Colorado created a list of pesticides that are acceptable to be used on cannabis plants, and marijuana operations are encouraged to submit pesticides to the CDA that they think would work well and are not harmful for human use. CannLabs is one company that specializes in testing marijuana crops for harmful chemicals. Cannabis grow houses and edible production companies face many restrictions when it comes to their operations. Their biggest issue is there are not any pesticides specifically designed for marijuana.
Colorado may be headed toward an all-new organic movement. Marijuana has dozens of medicinal uses. Some of these pesticides could cause further health conditions for medical marijuana patients in need of pain-relief. Medical and recreational consumers want a strain of marijuana that is safe, and chemical free.
Colorado in general is a healthy state, and is considered one of the top five most fit states in America. Organic grocery stores and farmer’s markets are found all over Boulder, Denver, and Colorado Springs. Dispensaries in Denver argue that it’s difficult to fight off insects and mold with organic pesticides, but organic marijuana grow houses are popping up. Places like Bud Brothers in Washington state are dedicated to all-natural growing techniques that (much like in the food industry) will make the cannabis organic yet just as potent. MiraClays in Colorado is a non-cannabis company in Colorado that promotes using their clay products to coat the soil around marijuana plants, which makes the plant grow faster while deterring pests.
The use of pesticides is a scary thought for most consumers. In the food industry, there are hundreds of laws protecting customers from ingesting something harmful, but marijuana is a whole other issue. Whether it’s being smoked or eaten doesn’t matter, cannabis users need to trust that their medical or recreational marijuana is safe. Colorado is on the verge of the next big organic movement, organic marijuana.
Northern Lights Cannabis Co. is a medical and recreational dispensary in Denver. We offer daily specials for medical marijuana patients, and with our loyalty program returning recreational customers can get additional discounts. Stop in, and see us at 2045 Sheridan Boulevard in Edgewater, Colorado. We’re open until 10pm Sunday through Thursday, and midnight on Friday and Saturday.
For home growers these tips will help defeat pests in marijuana plants.
Read more on the CDA’s continuing investigations here