Updated: Jun 7
With the legalization of cannabis in most U.S. states, people have slowly shed their orthodox beliefs regarding it. As a result, the cannabis industry made 25 billion USD in sales last year. Moreover, it is projected to make 33 billion USD in sales in 2022! Therefore, we can say that many citizens of the country have turned to cannabis for their prefered reasons. While its consumption becomes more widespread, people continue to take marijuana’s quality for granted.
Of course, when you purchase from a medical marijuana dispensary you would expect it to be of premium quality. Additionally, most states with legalized cannabis require it to undergo testing before it reaches the market for sale to the public. Thus, the cannabis or its products you buy are often third-party tested and you can also find the information on their labels.
However, it is still a plant at risk of mold, pesticides, and yeast. So, it is best to not become too relaxed and remain cautious about the products you consume. Fortunately, as consumers become more aware, the demand for “decontaminated marijuana” has gone up, resulting in the development of decontamination technology.
If you are new to cannabis, it is best to familiarize yourself with the process of decontamination.
What Is Cannabis Decontamination?
Cannabis contamination refers to cannabis products with excessive amounts of heavy metals, pesticides, or microbials. These amounts are higher than what is deemed safe for consumption.
The most common microbial found in cannabis is powdery mildew mold.
Other risky components include bile-tolerant, aspergillus, and gram-negative bacteria.
Any of these can cause harmful effects when consumed by humans.
High-level contamination can also stem from crossbred strains, as they are bred to be strong. However, in order to do that, their CBD value decreases and THC levels increase significantly. Such strains are more susceptible to contaminants.
This is where decontamination comes into play, as it is crucial to get rid of harmful components.
However, there is more than one way to perform decontamination on cannabis. So, let’s look at the different ways it is performed, allowing you to be more aware of what you’re consuming.
Types of Cannabis Decontamination
The microbial contaminants in marijuana plants often leave their growth by-products behind. This means that no decontamination method may be able to guarantee complete results. However, the amount that gets left behind will most likely not be enough to cause harm.
Similarly, microbe DNA may be left behind even after they are killed. In some cases, it may cause allergic reactions.
You may have come across cannabis product labels that guarantee the product is free of mold. This can be achieved through antimicrobial procedures; however, they may decrease the quality of the product, in turn affecting consumers’ health.
Another popular decontamination process involves the use of hydrogen peroxide, ozone, and other reactive oxygen species. These gases have toxic properties, great for sterilizing large cultivation areas, by breaking down the cells responsible for contamination. However, such gas treatments may not be successful at reaching microbes present in deeper surfaces of the cannabis flower every time. Thus, allowing internal microbes to continue growing even after being treated.
Radiofrequency (RF) is also a widely used way to decontaminate cannabis, in which radio waves are used to make water molecules inside the product vibrate. As a result, the molecules release heat that kills the microbes. The side effects of this method may include decreased potency, changed taste and smell.
However, the differences usually won’t be obvious enough for you to tell them apart.
Thus, we can conclude that the growing conditions significantly impact the cannabis contamination levels. So, how can you, as a consumer, ensure that you stay on the safe side while using cannabis products?
Staying Safe While Consuming Cannabis
The best way you can stay safe from contaminated marijuana is by purchasing it from reliable sources.
For instance, a government regulated medical marijuana dispensary in your state.
Dispensaries will make sure that they only sell quality products to their customers as they operate legally.
On the other hand, if you purchase from “dealers” there is no guarantee that the cannabis will be safe and contamination free. Moreover, getting caught buying from such sources can land you in trouble. So, make sure that you only buy marijuana and its products at a reliable place.
An MMJ card will provide you numerous benefits when you purchase marijuana from a dispensary. As a resident of New Jersey, you can get your card at an affordable rate at Ohio MMJ Card Doctor.
Many thanks to Mary @ Online CBD Store for this awesome content
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