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Apr-08-2022 16:08printcomments

Oregon Cannabis Edibles Potency Increases

New amounts means recreation consumers need to learn their limits

cannabis dispensary
Photo by Bonnie King, Salem-News.com

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - Recreation cannabis consumers in Oregon shopping for THC infused edibles will soon find some products available for purchase that are more potent than previously allowed.

Consumers should take notice of the increased amount of THC per serving in these products so they can choose a product that gives them a desired effect without unwanted side effects.

The previous limit was 50mg THC per package and 5mg per serving. As of April 1st, 2022, edibles sold through Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC) licensed stores can now contain packages up to 100mg THC and 10mg THC per serving.

Under OLCC rules, edibles containing the lower THC amounts remain available for sale. The change aligns with the potency allowances of most other states allowing the sale of adult-use cannabis.

Solid edibles that exceed 55mg THC in the package must now be scored so that it’s easy for a consumer to determine a portion size. As an example, a chocolate bar could be scored or marked up into ten equal portions, or a bag of gummies could contain 10 individual gummies each containing a portion of THC. (See OLCC Information Bulletin IB2022-03)

    Background

    On December 28, 2021, the OLCC adopted new marijuana rules in OAR Chapter 845, Divisions 25 and 26. The rules allow for recreational consumers to purchase marijuana edibles with up to 100 mg THC in the package and up to 10 mg THC per serving on and after April 1, 2022. Retailers were not able to sell 100 mg THC edibles to recreation consumers prior to April 1, 2022.
    The new rules also increased the potency limit for other marijuana items and several modifications were made to the daily sales limits for adult use consumers. See OAR 845-025-2800 and OAR 845-026-0210.
On March 31st, the OLCC had approved labels for 30 products containing 100mg edibles, including chocolate bars, cookies, cereal bars and gummies.

An OLCC-licensed retailer cannot sell marijuana edibles that are labeled under the medical rules to recreational consumers, even after this change. This is only because labels for medical marijuana edibles do not contain all of the required warnings for a "recreational" marijuana edible.

The medical label indicates it is for Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP) patients only. Also, it is unlikely medical grade edibles meet the scoring requirements (ability to cut it into pieces).

All marijuana edibles in Oregon must be sold in child resistant packaging. If not, the retailer must place it in an exit bag at the point of sale. This requirement applies to all marijuana and hemp items (except for usable marijuana and usable hemp). See OAR 845-025-7020.

Be careful with increased THC potency

With increased THC potency comes an increased effect from using these products so consumers should be more aware of potential side effects, especially in the event of over consumption.

Edibles take longer to digest and produce a high. Therefore, people may consume more to feel the effects faster, leading to dangerous results.

Since THC products became more readily available in Oregon calls to the Oregon Poison Control (OPC) have increased. In 2019, there were a total of 386 calls to OPC regarding cannabis. 34 percent of the 386 calls to OPC about cannabis exposure were due to edible consumption.

There are no reports of teens or adults dying from marijuana alone. However, some people who use marijuana can feel some very uncomfortable side effects, especially when using marijuana products with high THC levels.

According to NIDA, some have reported symptoms such as anxiety and paranoia, and in rare cases, an extreme psychotic reaction (which can include delusions and hallucinations) that can lead them to seek treatment in an emergency room.

The Oregon Health Authority and OLCC recommends that cannabis edible consumers, especially first-time users, consume in a safe place with someone not using cannabis, start with a small serving, and give themselves time to react to the THC.

Consumers should call the Poison Center, at 1-800-222-1222, if they or someone they’re with is experiencing an adverse reaction.

Source(s): Oregon Health Authority; OLCC; NIDA

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