A look at the edible industry

Kyle Fenton, Staff Reporter

Marijuana-infused edibles have brought about controversy to the recreational marijuana industry since Washington and Colorado legalized use.

Last June, Maureen Dowd, opinion columnist for The New York Times, wrote about her experience with a cannabis-infused chocolate caramel bar. Throughout her opinion piece she cast a negative light on edibles as a whole despite her ignorance of the industry and inexperience with the product.

Here is part of Dowd’s recollection of the incident that was published on The Opinion Pages, headlined “Don’t Harsh Our Mellow, Dude.”

“But then I felt a scary shudder go through my body and brain. I barely made it from the desk to the bed, where I lay curled up in a hallucinatory state for the next eight hours. I was thirsty but couldn’t move to get water. Or even turn off the lights. I was panting and paranoid, sure that when the room-service waiter knocked and I didn’t answer, he’d call the police and have me arrested for being unable to handle my candy.”

Stesha Ries, director of operations of Green Chief Edibles, said in this particular incident the candy bar wasn’t properly labeled.

“She wasn’t properly informed,” Ries said.

According to Ellensburg Apothecary Owner Rob Hendrix, up until two weeks ago prodicts were allowed to contain up to 10 mg of THC per package. The Liquor Control Board (LCB) has since increased that number to 100 mg.

“Now, in my particular opinion, 10 mg is at least 2 servings,” Hendrix said, hinting that he was some what of a light weight.

The LCB has mandated that 10 mg of THC is the recommended dose for consumers.

“With 10 mg no one’s going to get themselves in trouble like the idiot New York Times reporter,” Hendrix said.

Dowd also mentioned two deaths associated with pot infused edibles in her article. The first was a 19-year-old college student in Wyoming who consumed a 65 mg THC pot cookie and then jumped off a Denver hotel balcony. The second was a Denver man that ingested an unknown amount of pot candy and then killed his wife

Ries ensures that the retailers that Green Chief Edibles sells to are knowledgable about dosages.

“Have they ever tried cannabis before? Are they consuming cannabis on a regular occasion? Is it something they’re used to doing? All those factors have to be taken into account before consumption,” said Ries.

Ries encourages first time users to not eat more than about half of a package, which would equal out to a 5 mg dose of THC, then wait 30-45 minutes before eating more.

“This is something that the LCB has put a lot of thought into, they know exactly what is out there and know how its being served,” Ries said.

Zack Dekker, advanced applicant for a tier three processing license and long time cannabis consumer, said, “if I had a breakfast, lunch and dinner and dosed 35 milligrams at each meal, I would still have a productive day.”

With kids having bags of candy following Halloween weekend, it is important to remember to keep edibles in a safe responsible place. The packaging is required to be child safe and each package has a Mr. Yuck label on it that reads KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN AT ALL TIMES!