Why Measure Pesticide Levels?
While pesticides and other chemicals certainly have their place in helping to grow crops around the world, residual pesticides in medical marijuana can have serious negative effects on patients. It is vitally important to understand and control the amount of residual pesticides present in your product to ensure patient safety.
Exposure to pesticides is extremely dangerous and may cause acute toxicity, allergic reactions, cancers, Alzheimer’s disease, or other adverse conditions.
Because a single technique may not be sufficient to identify all pesticides being used, our lab uses techniques such as liquid chromatography with a mass spectral detector (LC/MS) as well as gas chromatography with a mass spectral detector (GC/MS) to first separate out any pesticides present, then detect and identify them. This extremely sensitive technique allows us to identify and detect extremely low levels of pesticides that may have been used during the growing process. The technique allows us to also unambiguously identify the pesticides being use.
What are Pesticides?
Pesticides are commonly used to kill insects, spiders, and other pests that often thrive indoors because there are no predators inside of the growing facility. Fungicides are used to control fungal growth, which is another problem that can be a factor in indoor cultivation.
While the federal government strictly regulates the use of pesticides/fungicides on cultivated crops, there are no federal standards for their use on cannabis. Nevada is mandating pesticide testing to understand how much is left on the product being sold.