California is running out of weed even though recreational marijuana has been legalized at the start of the year, and the reason for this isn’t a lack of producers.
California has long been a weed state, even before recreational marijuana got legalized, however its government didn’t always make money from weed like it does now.
So, when revenues start sinking and the business starts going south, people tend to blame the government for it, and it this case they are right to do so.
Why is there a weed shortage in California?
The state of California issued 599 temporary manufacturing licenses and 3,105 temporary cultivation licenses but only granted 31 temporary licenses for labs.
As you may assume, this creates a huge lack of employees in the laboratories which simply cannot keep up with the demand of the manufacturers and other cultivators.
But what created this demand for sudden laboratory testing?
Well, that’s when those yelling “it’s the governments fault” start being right .
Josh Swider, co-owner of San Diego-based Infinite Chemical Analysis Labs, says that the recent surge of cannabis testing is due to changes that the new cannabis laws brought.
Marijuana companies in California had 6 months to sell weed harvested or processed before 2018, as that weed isn’t in compliance with the current law after July 1st.
“Lots of people are scrambling,” said Josh Swider, “They’re calling me every ten minutes saying, ‘Where’s my sample? Where’s my sample?’
Labs have been looking for new personnel and staffing vigorously for the past 3 weeks only to find that their turnaround times are still much larger than they were before the new regulations.
Labs in Cali test for 66 residual pesticides, 20 residual solvents and processing chemicals, 4 heavy metals and 3 kinds of microbes.
The test results are not always in order with the guidelines set forth by the law, so some companies have to test their products multiple times, thus further jamming up the road for other producers that wait for their product to be tested.
Robert Martin, CEO at CW Analytical, said that around 10% of all samples fail the test. Most commonly the reasons for the failure is the lack of compliance with the numbers on the label of the product.
Martin said that the vast majority of those fails happen because the THC claim made on their labels doesn’t match the lab’s analysis, which is forbidden by law.
In fact, the levels of THC have been heavily regulated all throughout the system, as the state now imposes a limit of 10 mg of THC per serving and 100 mg of THC per package.
All these changes, along with a lack of weed, are hitting California pretty hard. Analysts are projecting potential loses to be in the single-digit millions.
Many believe that the regulations imposed upon California’s recreational cannabis market are much more strict than necessary, and we tend to agree.