The state Bureau of Cannabis Control announced Monday that 75% of cannabis products seized from unlicensed retailers in Los Angeles contained undisclosed additives, some potentially dangerous, and nearly all had significantly lower THC than claimed on the label.
During a three-day operation in December, the bureau, in coordination with other state agencies and the city of Los Angeles, seized more than 10,000 illegal vape pens from unlicensed cannabis retailers in Los Angeles, according to the bureau’s Alex Traverso.
The operation resulted in the arrest of 125 people and seizure of 11 illegal firearms and more than two tons of cannabis products, valued at over $10 million, Traverso said.
The samples were tested by the California Department of Health, and officials discovered that 75 percent were cut with undisclosed additives, including vitamin E, vitamin E acetate, propylene glycol, polyethylene glycol and medium chain triglycerides, according to Traverso. Some of the additives are potentially dangerous, Traverso said.
Officials also found that the THC content of nearly all the samples were incorrectly labeled.
“For example, one vape cartridge label included a claim that the oil contained 80-85% THC, but actually contained 33% THC,” Traverso said. “Some vape products seized from the unlicensed stores contained as little as 18% THC.”
“The prevalence of dirty and dangerous vape pens at unlicensed cannabis stores demonstrate how important it is for consumers to purchase cannabis goods from licensed retailers, which are required to sell products that meet state testing and labeling standards,” said Bureau of Cannabis Control Chief Lori Ajax.
The bureau encouraged consumers to scan retailers’ QR codes when they are buying cannabis products. The QR code will link consumers to the bureau’s online license search where they can confirm the cannabis retailer’s license status.
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