Tall indoor cannabis plants in a Colorado legal grow room.


Oregon Health Authority Issues High Alert over Pesticide-Tainted Cannabis

The Oregon Health Authority has issued a health alert regarding two strains sold at a McMinnville dispensary that “may have been tainted” with high levels of pesticide, the agency announced in a press release. OHA says about 130 customers purchased the tainted strains between Oct. 17 and Oct. 19.

The batches of Dr. Jack and Marion Berry, sold at New Leaf CannaCenter, failed pesticide tests for high levels of spinosad. The OHA “action level” for the pesticide is .2 parts per million; Dr. Jack contained 42 ppm, and Marion Berry had 22 ppm.

“There is no level of spinosad that has been shown to be safe in cannabis that is smoked,” David Farrer, OHA public health toxicologist, said in the release. “Our action levels serve as a pre-market screen, but should not be considered ‘safe levels.’”

The tainted batches came from one grower and were available only at the one location. According to the release, the cannabis had failed a test by an accredited laboratory, but the grower sent it to the dispensary anyway. The name of the grower is being withheld because it is confidential under state law.

The agency suggests returning the product to the dispensary or disposing of it. Other strains with similar names at other dispensaries are not affected by the alert.

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