New Lab Tests Show Dangers of Unregulated THC Vape Cartridges


Just a reminder to only purchase tested vapes from licensed sources.

New data from a California laboratory show that THC vape cartridges may carry a substantial risk of exposing users to harmful chemicals. And while the test results from analytic laboratory CannaSafe show that illicit market products pose the most danger, even carts from licensed companies may be unsafe if used improperly.

CannaSafe, a state-licensed cannabis laboratory in Los Angeles, conducted a study of THC vape cartridges that it obtained from both licensed dispensaries and unlicensed delivery services. The company completed a laboratory analysis of the cartridges that tested the vapor produced by the cartridges for the presence of harmless compounds. Unlike other tests that analyze the contents of cartridges, the new tests reveal the toxins present in vapor after cannabis oil is heated and vaporized prior to inhalation. Similar tests are currently being conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in its continuing investigation of the series of lung injuries caused by vaping that has claimed the lives of at least 40 people.

Dangers of Unlicensed Carts

All six of the illicit cartridges tested contained high levels of potentially harmful chemicals, including one labeled Maui Wowie that had 1,500 times the allowable level of pesticides and five times the legal concentration of lead.

“It had everything bad in it,” said CannaSafe vice president of operations Antonio Frazier. “If you look at some of the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] data for fatal dosing, I’d be willing to bet that some of these are over what they would consider a fatal dose.”

Vapor from counterfeit cartridges manufactured to mimic the products of licensed brands Stiiizy and Kingpen contained formaldehyde and carbon monoxide. The vapor of a cartridge sold under the illicit brand name Dank Vapes showed the presence of seven different pesticides, trace amounts of formaldehyde, and significant levels of vitamin E acetate, an additive used in many unregulated products. Vitamin E acetate has been identified by the CDC as a likely culprit in the spate of lung injuries known as e-cigarette and vaping product use associated lung injury, or EVALI. Five of the six illicit market cartridges contained vitamin E acetate at levels ranging from 30% to nearly 37%. Illicit cartridges also had lower levels of cannabinoids and terpenes than products from licensed manufacturers.

Read full article here.

A.J. Herrington – High Times – November 15, 2019.

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