Is Cannabis Vegan? Exploring the Pesticides made from Milk Bacteria

Living a pure vegan life can be tough. Avoiding the meat and dairy industry is a lot harder than it should be. Animal parts sneak their way into our food in peculiar ways, and that shouldn’t even be a thought when smoking something as green as weed, right?

Well, just like your veggies, you have a few things to consider.

Such as:

“How green are the pesticides that might be sprayed onto your cannabis flowers?”

I couldn’t possibly be about to tell you a product that was forced out of an animal can be applied directly onto your herbs – could I?

Lacto-San and Cyclone

Active ingredients:Lactic acid and Citric acid

These food-safe acids help prevent powdery mildew and are approved for legal crops in Canada. Despite their name, they are more gentle than you might expect. Not all acids will destroy the delicate aromatics that are found in plants.

But be warned. In theory, when either spray is lit on fire in an open environment, it should degrade into water and carbon dioxide. In reality, it is hard to predict what substances will be formed and how they will affect you.

From the Udder

Are they really squeezed out of an animal, though?

Does lactic acid come from milk? Not necessarily. You can produce lactic acid by fermenting a bacteria called lactobacillus that can be produced without being inside a cow or goat. This can, however, be isolated from animal products. In the case of the approved pesticides Cyclone and LactoSan, they indeed can acquire their lactic acid by fermenting whey – a milk protein.

This is why the label’s allergy information even claim the pesticides “may contain milk.”

Non-Vegan Veggies

Your cannabis may be an innocent plant, but if you legally purchased it from a store in Canada, it is not vegan-friendly. This fact may not surprise anyone who is familiar with how a plant is grown because fertilizing plants with fish, or the bones and blood of animals, is a common method of organic farming.

These meat-industry byproducts can be added to the soil as plant-food in legal crops.

Questioning Our Moral Compass

It may be true that the animal parts destined to be fed to plants would have otherwise found themselves in dairy farms and butcher shop dumpsters, or possibly in protein shakes. Is this enough to justify manipulating that waste for our benefit on a mass production scale? Should that waste even exist to begin with?

I would assume the answer to those questions will have a major morality divide.

Your Cucurbits Aren’t Safe

Courtesy of Worldwide Fruits.

Unfortunately, just like Canadian cannabis, BC’s cucumbers and squash may not be vegan-friendly either, depending on the farmer’s pest management plan. As of January 2019, a similar lactic acid is approved for use on cucurbit crops- which includes cucumbers, squash, gourds, and pumpkins- in the province of British Columbia.

That information is opaque as it comes from digging through an official provincial registry.

Scoping For Lies and Misconceptions

How do you find out if an LP’s cannabis is truly vegan?

Sadly, there are very few regulations on what claims have to be made for cannabis as it is not a food product. Most of the answers they do give are designed in a way to divert the truth, so they are incredibly misleading. I wish I could take their words as honest.

Unfortunately, a company’s processes and practices tend to be a secret of intellectual property put under lock and key. This causes their words to be filled with legal misdirection.

It becomes difficult to even find out if the fat used to make insecticidal soaps originated in an animal or not.

For more on cannabis, growing, and pesticides, check out:

Featured image courtesy of Healthline.