Concern Grows Over Unregulated Pesticide Use On Cannabis

cannabis, marijuana plantAs most growers know well, the federal government regulates all insecticides, fungicides, herbicides and other commercial chemicals used on agricultural crops. Therein lies the problem with use of chemicals on cannabis crops – so far, the feds want nothing to do with legalized marijuana.

According to “Concern Grows Over Unregulated Pesticide Use On Cannabis,” a June 17 article on the National Public Radio (NPR) network by Agribusiness Reporter Luke Runyon, the lack of regulated chemicals for cannabis has left growers to experiment on their own.


“In the absence of any direction the subject of pesticide use on the crop has just devolved to whatever people think is working or they think is appropriate,” said Colorado State University Entomologist Whitney Cranshaw in the NPR report. “Sometimes they’ve used some things that are appropriate, sometimes unsafe.”

Denver officials held tens of thousands of marijuana plants earlier this year due to safety concerns, but currently, Colorado doesn’t require growers to test cannabis crops for traces of pesticides before being sold, according to the article. State agriculture officials recently released a list of pesticides deemed appropriate for use on cannabis. Similar lists are available in Washington state, Nevada and Illinois, Runyon reported. With cannabis being such a new industry, the policy for pesticide application hasn’t been addressed yet.

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