Witnessing the exponential growth of the marijuana industry is a once in a lifetime experience. But the speed of expansion is causing a lot of misinformation.
So, here we are, just a couple years into marijuana legalization in the U.S. Now, nearly half of the United States has legalized some form of marijuana use. Things are moving quickly—but at what cost?
I recall my parents telling me to “take my time” when I was doing my homework when I was a kid. I always wanted to rush so I could go outside to ride bikes or anything other than homework. But when I rushed, I would make mistakes—it took a toll on the quality of my work.
The rapid expansion of the marijuana industry in America can be viewed in a similar light. We are in a hurry to create legislation that allows for access to marijuana. But along the way a lot of information slips through the cracks. As consumers, we are at the mercy of the publications that tell us what is what when it comes to marijuana. But how do we know the information is accurate?
One example that comes to mind surrounds the company CW Botanicals who produces the highly sought after hemp oil products Charlotte’s Web. If you do a quick Google search, you will find dispensaries that carry Charlotte’s Web flower. I was excited to see $160 ounces of Charlotte’s Web bud, but something seemed off. I did a little more research and found that the company does not produce flower, nor does it license its genetics for reproduction. So how are dispensaries selling this “strain”, if in fact it doesn’t exist?
The truth is, the dispensaries that claim to have Charlotte’s Web flower do not have what they claim. In one case a dispensary lists their Charlotte’s Web flower as having 16% THC. But the products are well known to be hemp—hemp that contains less than .3% THC.
Many people depend on the medical qualities of hemp products, so when they see the name Charlotte’s Web they have a certain expectation. If they are purchasing the advertised flower with an expectation that it will do what the genuine products do, they might be in trouble—their health is at risk.
This isn’t to say that the dispensaries are engaging in questionable behavior. Perhaps their cultivators are giving misinformation. Perhaps they don’t know better. In the worst case, they do know better and they are attempting to make a quick buck off the marketing efforts of the companies they are misrepresenting. In any case, they are putting us at risk. Compound that risk with marijuana news and information sources perpetuating the same misinformation and you can see how the industry has some serious lack of oversight.
As consumers, we need to come together to create a standard of quality information. If we demand the truth, if we take it upon ourselves to investigate and correct mistakes, we will all be better off. It is our social responsibility to make the world of marijuana a safer place. Creating the expectation for true and accurate information is the only way we can be completely safe.
We have seen this situation in many other industries. Think about the automobile industry. There are always recalls for one safety issue or another. These recalls cost the automobile manufacturers millions of dollars. Do you think they would recall the cars if we didn’t demand premier safety standards? Probably not—but we won’t allow them to exist without these oversights. I challenge each of you to become savvy marijuana consumers. Ask questions. Demand truth. Look out for yourself and everyone else.
Do you know of any marijuana misinformation? Have you been fooled? Do you feel safe believing everything you read about marijuana? Let us know on social media or in the comments section below.