Cannabis is harmless and natural, but its contaminants may not be. If your cannabis isn’t tested for chemicals, bacteria, pesticides or fungi, you could unknowingly ingest a contaminant that may be harmful to human health, or it could even combust. Because of this, you should always get your cannabis from a licensed dispensary.
Contamination occurs during growing, harvesting, extracting, handling or storage, so there are plenty of opportunities for your cannabis to contain a few extra substances or chemicals.
Take a look at these signs of cannabis contamination and find out how to keep yourself safe and protected.
There are many microbial contaminants that may come into contact with cannabis. While some bacterial strains are beneficial, there are many strains that have proven harmful to human health and may be found on contaminated cannabis.
Such bacterial strains as Salmonella and Klebsiella pneumoniae, the bacteria responsible for pneumonia and wound infections, have been found on infected strains of cannabis.
Fungi thrive in high humidity and temperatures, which is exactly the environment for growing cannabis. Because of this, cannabis can easily become contaminated by a number of different fungal infections.
Mildew and grey mold are common fungi found on contaminated cannabis plants. These typically show up as a white fuzz or a powdery substance, and anything showing these symptoms shouldn’t be consumed.
Aspergillus fumigatus, Mucor circinelloides and Cryptococcus laurentii have been detected on cannabis, which can lead to a variety of fungal infections in individuals with compromised immune systems.
Pesticides are another problem with the growing process, especially in unregulated markets. Growers typically spray pesticides on the crops to keep them safe from insects, but some pesticides can easily withstand the curing process and remain on the plant.
Breathing in pesticides can cause throat, sinus and lung irritation, as well as potential health problems in the future.
When cannabis is used for essential oils, the extraction process pumps solvents through the cannabis to get the oils, which can leave residual solvents behind that are potentially harmful.
On occasion, even the cleaning chemicals used on the extraction equipment can stay behind, which are far more potent than the extraction solvents.
In some cases, cannabis dealers can add harmful contaminants to make their supply more appealing or give it a higher weight. It’s also possible for cannabis to become contaminated in the handling process itself, depending on the hands or surfaces it contacts.
Unfortunately, a consumer is completely at the mercy of the dealer in this situation, and may unknowingly ingest harmful substances.
At Euphoria Wellness, we pride ourselves on providing the highest safety standards in the industry. In addition to our highly trained, knowledgeable staff and our secure facility, we also have a clean, safe environment with only the highest quality strains. Take the guesswork out of your cannabis experience by stopping by with your Maryland medical cannabis card or checking out our menu!