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  • Lucie Colomb

Should you be afraid of pesticide on cannabis?

A new buzzword word that we hear all over in the cannabis industry right now is “Pesticide”. The reason is that for consumers, the word has been linked to a non-safe to use cannabis.

What Is a Pesticide?

By definition, a pesticide is a substance used for destroying organisms and insects that could cause harm to cultivated plants. This includes herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, disinfectants and compounds like the ones used to control mice and rats.

Why Do People Fear Pesticides?

People think that the inhalation of pesticides is linked to health problems, such as respiratory issues and the famous Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS).

CHS is a condition that causes cannabis consumers to experience nausea and vomiting, but also abdominal pain. They are not enough research or data to prove the connection between CHS and pesticide inhalation. But even so, you don’t want to be smoking them.

Which Pesticides Do People Fear?

The most used pesticide in cannabis is neem oil, a naturally occurring pesticide found in the seeds of neem tree. The component of this pesticide is azadirachtin.

Some consumers believe that azadirachtin is the cause of CHS, while others believe that consumers aren’t experiencing CHS, but actually azadirachtin poisoning. Both ideas haven’t been proven by science.

Can Cannabis Really Be Pesticide-Free?

The highest quality cannabis is free of mildew, mold, and insects. If cannabis producers are using zero substances to prevent these from attacking their planta, how can growers keep them away from the buds?

Here is the answer:

- Growing the plants in a controlled environment, which allows a producer to regulate exactly what’s happening in their grow rooms.

- The law doesn’t always require the disclosure of using approved pesticides.

- Applying pesticides during the vegetative state of a plant’s life is a common practice, and pesticides will not remain as the plant begins to flower and produce the final product that ends up on our shelves.

- What this all means is that “pesticide-free” is not as simple as it seems, and consumers need to into the brands and products that claim it.

Which Pesticides Are Safe?

Even if most cannabis producers do implement some pesticides into their growing methods, there are plenty of safe ways of pest management that will not harm the consumers.

Beneficial insects are bugs that do not harm cannabis, but instead, eat the pests that will eventually attack it.

On top of beneficial insects, some growers pull natural pesticides already used in certain plants and apply them to cannabis in order to maintain integrity. They use things including rosemary oil and chrysanthemum oil.

How to Buy Pesticide-Free Cannabis?

The safest cannabis to consume will always be of the pesticide-free variety. The only way we’ll ever know what products fall under that umbrella is if they go through verified lab testing, and one that provides results for each and every product that you can verify and trust. The quality of the lab is crucial as you want to have one that follows the rules strictly and doesn't try to bend it.

Check for the label on your product, look for the little “Tested By PSK”, and check the results yourself. And if they don’t have it? Then you don’t want that producer’s cannabis

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