Article by David Brown, Lift News
In response to recalls of cannabis products related to the use of unauthorized pesticides, Health Canada announced in February that they would begin conducting random product testing.
They now say that, to date, they have conducted unannounced inspections of seven licensed producers of cannabis, collecting 43 random samples. According to Maryse Durette, Senior Media Relations Advisor for Health Canada, these samples included cannabis plants, dried cannabis, cannabis oil and pest control products at the facilities.
“The product samples have been drawn from current and past production lots,” Durette told Lift News, “which licensed producers are required to retain for a minimum of one year after the date of last sale. Health Canada is in the process of testing these products to ensure that only authorized pest control products are used during the production of medical cannabis. All licensed producers, including any newly licensed producers, are subject to random testing at any point in time.”
Durette also says that Health Canada has added special “terms and conditions” to Organigram and Mettrum that require testing of every product lot. In a communication with Lift in early March, André Gagnon, Media Relations Officer for Health Canada, said they were satisfied with Mettrum and OrganiGram’s response to these issues.
“Both Organigram and Mettrum have adopted a series of corrective measures to ensure that no unauthorized pesticides are used in any future production of cannabis at their site,” writes Durette. “These corrective measures include revising their internal procedures, adding video monitoring within their sites and ensuring supervision of product preparation. In addition, the companies have adopted an expanded testing regime whereby all products are tested for unauthorized pesticides, and this testing is now a condition of their Health Canada license. “
Neither OrganiGram nor Mettrum were able to account for how pesticides made their way onto the cannabis products they sold.