When I was little, I remember my parents searching through my Halloween candy, throwing away anything that wasn’t wrapped or looked odd. For years working in TV news I told parents to check everything even get it x-rayed -- before letting their child dig in. Back then the worries were based on urban legends about creepy people messing with the treats.
If you live in Colorado or Washington State, that boogie man might be real. Now that marijuana is legal in ALL its forms, police are warning parents in those areas that pot-infused candy looks a lot like the real thing.
Most edible marijuana is sold in very drab packaging that’s hard to confuse with regular colorful candy wrappers. But, once you open them, it can be virtually impossible to tell a spiked gummy bear, Jolly Rancher or Sour Patch Kid from the original.
Edible pot has become a top seller in dispensaries in Colorado. Companies are selling infused sodas and chocolates. Some also douse bulk candy and colorful breakfast cereals with cannabis oil. One hospital in the Denver area has admitted several children who accidentally ingested pot. Experts say some of these homemade products are packed with enough THC for 10 people. Even adults have reported getting sick after eating some of these snacks.
Lawmakers in Colorado are now demanding all pot-infused food and drink to have a very distinct look. One company is even offering parents marijuana testing kits to check their kids’ candy.
This is just one of the unintended consequences arising from the legalization of marijuana, especially when it’s allowed for recreational use. There are sure to be several more around the corner. Such issues will certainly be debated in other states as they wrestle with the question of legalization. It will be interesting to see how they shape the discussion.
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