For Canada’s “Big Pot” industry, it’s a shocking year-end fall from grace.

It’s tarnished an otherwise dazzling 2016 for the country’s industrialized medical cannabis growers.

And what exquisitely cruel timing with two image-bruising developments in the last two business days of 2016.

For many shareholders in particular, it was analogous to a much-anticipated bottle of high-end champagne turning out to be flat on New Year’s Eve.

Here’s what happened: it recently came to light that two federal government-approved ‘licensed producers (LPs) of medical marijuana have been caught by authorities selling tainted cannabis to medical patients.

This is a big deal.

Admittedly, nobody is suggesting that some nefarious corporate malfeasance has just been exposed. Hopefully, it just turns out to be instances of human error in both cases.

Nonetheless, it hurts the credibility of an industry that insists that it grows and sells the cleanest, safest, best-quality medicinal marijuana in the whole world.

It also undermines the argument that Canada’s many small medical pot dispensaries should be legislated out of business — all because their products aren’t grown under the watchful eye of Health Canada or even with its approval.

In fact, some LPs have even lobbied to have their main rivals shut down for selling cannabis that isn’t grown to pharmaceutical-grade standards.

Canada’s well-financed medical marijuana LPs boast that they’re pioneering the very best industry standards in the world. Now this claim to fame has been besmirched.

The first scandal to blow up last week came with southern Ontario-based Mettrum Health Corp.

It revealed that a controversial pesticide that’s banned in Canada had been found on an unspecified amount of Mettrum’s products.

The chemical in question is myclobutanil, which is known to emit hydrogen cyanide when smoked or heated in other ways. This comes on the heels of recent recall involving another banned pesticide, pyrethrin, which was found in some of Mettrum’s cannabis.

The other scandal involves Organigram Holdings.

The New Brunswick-based company announced late Friday that it’s doing a recall on cannabis it sold as far back as August.

That’s problematic. After all, who buys cannabis for daily use to help manage a chronic health condition but doesn’t use it for at least five months?

In reality, many of the tainted products have surely been consumed already. And medical patients must now be left wondering if they’ve unwittingly ingested a health-compromising toxin.

Organigram isn’t saying what the offending chemical is. But it is reassuring its customers and shareholders that the contaminant “is not likely to cause any adverse health consequences.”

So it seems like Organigram’s customers might have less to worry about than medical patients who bought hydrogen-cyanide-laced cannabis from Mettrum.

Read the full column by Marc Davis at the Huffington Post

 

  • bob

    the thing that amazes me is none of them…. you have forgotten to mention tilray as well…. know how those chemicals got on their product…

    they have their own oversite run by their QA people..hc runs inspections….and for organigram some organic licensing body is also watching over…ALL OBVIOUSLY INCOMPETENT

    but how they get around being discovered cheating is they get 3rd parties to purchase these chemicals for them so they are never entered on the books..

    they are knowingly doing this and also sending out contaminated product in an attempt to create income..

    but when entire focus is the bottom line and sleazy people run these companies this will continue to happen…

    this is much like another recent bit of bullshit by the government with the disallowing of farmers to slaughter their own animals because of E- colli and such concerns..

    all of the recalls were from large commercial corporations that are foreign owned and have full time inspectors from hc there ..they will screw this up in much the same manner…
    with this one we have won by getting a judge to say that unless people were conveniently close to a licensed slaughter house they could do it themselves…..

    for LP’s or anyone for that matter sends out contaminated product ..knowingly or otherwise…they should have to refund all of that product and send a free 3rd party verified replacement product free of charge..

    AS MONEY IS THIER ONLY CONCERN IT IS ONLT BY PENALIZING THEM THAT THEY WILL BE MOTIVATED TO STOP CHEATING…

    BUT WE HOPE BEAURACRAPS WOULD PROTECT US FROM THESE PEOPLE BUT THEY ARE FIRST OFF ALL ON THE SAME TEAM AND IT WOULD SET A PRECEDENT TO PENALIZE THESE FOLKS AS THEN WE MAY HOLD THE POLITICOS TO THIER RESPONSIBILITIES AS WELL..SO THEY WILL BE ALLOWED AND EVEN HELPED TO CONTINUE TO SCREW OVER THE CUSTOMER…AFTER ALL WE ARE JUST CHILDREN AND CANNOT LOOK AFTER OURSELVES HAHAHAHAH ASSHOLES

    YES HELP THEM..A LITTLE WHILE AGO THEY ALLOWED THE LP’S TO DO IN HOUSE TESTING…AND LO AND BEHOLD ALL THIER STUFF WAS PURE AND GOOD HAHAHAH

    OF COURSE THEY NEEDED THIS AS THE BULK OF THIER PRODUCT WAS REJECTED BY THIRD PARTY TESTING…THIS WAS TILRAY AND I ASSUME THE OTHER BIG BOYS PLAY THE SAME

    • Bonnie kwasnicki

      All product must be inspected/tested before being shipped to patients. Organigram misrepresented their product as organic and should immediately lose that certification. Talk to a lawyer!

      • bob

        yes but HC is allowing them to test thier ownnn hahahahahha

        as an organic farmer for 40 years i have seen many regulating bodies come and go and some have such lax requirements that they are useless..this may be true of the one these guys are registered with….a company based in Quebec which i have not previously heard off…do not forget they get a fee for registering you…..so biased from the start….
        i did call organigram and ask them about this..was referred to no-one….

        it is good that they are trying to be organic it is very difficult to do economically so i suspect they will give up eventually…

        but having tested some indoor grown product for heavy metals ,which are left behind even with correct flushing’ it has shown toxic levels that are not required to test for…and concentrating this product makes it actually poisonous…for the rec market this is unacceptable but common

        for medicine it needs to be held to a higher standard…which in my opinion is not doable by a profit driven company which all LP’s are especially the publicly traded ones that are now under the control of accountants ..