Washington State’s Liquor Control Board has just approved Analytical 360, which shows guidelines on how they will roll out the medical and recreational marijuana market, in addition to a state licensed testing facility which will be operational this June. This first state certified lab will conduct tests to accurately measure the amount of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, and a cannabinoid that perhaps has medicinal qualities, and the ever-popular CBD, which is non-psychoactive and is said to have miraculous healing properties for epileptics, MS sufferers, and for other serious chronic illnesses.
The news that came out a few years back was that State licenses 2 more recreational cannabis stores, which is a welcome oasis as this has opened up a bigger platform for people to venture into this process because marijuana has some excellent medicinal benefits that are quite useful in treating ailments and even eases the side effects of chemotherapy to a large extent as many patients suffering from cancer have had only positive things to say about it and CBD oil is an added bonus.
Analytical 360 is the process that the lab will use to determine how much THC and CBD is contained within marijuana. It uses two processes ultraviolet spectroscopy and liquid chromatography to accurately determine the levels of these cannabinoids or marijuana compounds. Gas chromatographic testing is another method but it is far less accurate. Medical marijuana growers will have their crop brought to Analytical 360 to certify the levels of THC and CBD for different perscriptions and for different effects. Marijuana, for instance for a child with a severe epileptic condition, would be given a high CBD low THC form of marijuana, whereas someone suffering from severe pain may be given one that has THC. Besides Analytical 360 other licenses for labs are being considered in Washington State.
The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) Washington State director, Kevin Oliver, made a statement saying, “There are currently about 40 license processors and producers, but as of yet there are no licensed retailers.” Oliver went on to say that, “Given that there will ultimately be hundreds and hundreds of retailers and thousands of producers and processors, it is clear that dozens if not hundreds of more testing labs are going to be needed as well.” Standardization is an important process to be implemented by any industry so that it will operate safely within that given state. Washington State saw the rollout of Colorado’s recreational marijuana program and thinks it has learned a few lessons. Accurate labeling, packaging and testing have all been issues that the industry has been struggling with but will quickly find solutions to. Some people have been sickened by marijuana laced products that were too strong. And there has been the perennial worry of keeping marijuana laced sweets away from children.
There have been other real-life controversies, however, such as an African university student who died in Colorado after eating a marijuana laced cookie. Another man who ate marijuana laced candy shot his wife. Though Washington State hopes to better control it’s rollout and have it be more subdued, analysts believe that sooner a later something will occur that regulators and others overlooked or failed to see coming. Of course this is the case with any burgeoning industry. Analysts believe more discoveries into the uses of medical marijuana and more scrutiny of edible products will lead to labs becoming an integral part of the whole process.