Florida officials on Tuesday completed “Operation Kandy Krush,” uncovering nearly 70,000 packages of edible hemp products with packaging that target children due to their likeness to common, branded, candies such as Air Heads, Skittles, Trolli gummy candies, Jolly Ranchers, Sour Patch Kids, and Life Savers.
The products were outlawed by a measure passed during the 2023 legislative session. The bill defined the term “attractive to children” to mean manufactured in the shape of humans, cartoons, or animals; manufactured in a form that bears any reasonable resemblance to an existing candy product that is familiar to the public as a widely distributed, branded food product such that a product could be mistaken for the branded product, especially by children; or containing any color additives.
In a statement, Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Wilton Simpson said the action “sends a clear message that illegal and unsafe hemp products have no place” in the state, and officials “will continue diligently enforcing the law to keep … communities safe.”
“As part of our ongoing commitment to safeguarding Florida’s children and consumers, we launched ‘Operation Kandy Krush,’ Florida’s most extensive hemp inspection sweep ever. Today, we’re proud to announce the results, as we’ve uncovered nearly 70,000 hemp products – including euphoric, high-potency THC products – specifically designed to appeal to children, a blatant violation of Florida law.” — Simpson in a press release
The sweep included inspections of more than 475 food establishments in 37 Florida counties.
Under the law, consumers must be 21 or older to purchase hemp products that contain THC, requires such products to be packaged in a safe container, and requires ingestible hemp products to be held to the same health and safety standards as other food products.
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