SACRAMENTO, Calif. – As has been widely reported, federal, state and local health departments, as well as other clinical and public health partners, are investigating a multistate outbreak of severe respiratory disease associated with e-cigarette and cannabis vaping products.
As of September 11, 2019, over 450 possible cases have been identified in 33 states, with approximately 62 reported cases in California, according to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH).
Since the passage of the Medicinal and Adult Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act, the California Cannabis Industry Association (CCIA) has been committed to promoting policies that ensure consumers and medicinal patients are consuming compliant cannabis and cannabis products that have met California’s rigorous health and safety requirements.
While investigations are ongoing and a cause has not yet been identified, it is important to note that no cannabis vaping products purchased at licensed cannabis businesses have been linked to these illnesses in California. In fact, CDPH is currently attributing illnesses in California to untested products purchased from the illicit market.
California’s regulated cannabis and cannabis products are rigorously tested for residuals, toxins, solvents, pesticides and heavy metals above and beyond the testing required for any other manufactured product sold in California. Consequently, when consumers purchase cannabis on the illicit market, they are subjecting themselves to a number of potential health risks.
California consumers deserve to know the difference between regulated and illicit cannabis, and the possible detrimental health impacts of using unregulated cannabis. That is why CCIA has proudly cosponsored AB 1529 by Assemblymember Evan Low (D-Silicon Valley), which requires that the state-mandated universal symbol for cannabis is included on every regulated cannabis vaporizer device in a manner that is safe and useful for cannabis consumers.
AB 1529 strengthens the intent of CDPH’s regulations to ensure that consumers and medicinal patients understand what they are consuming and know that their products are manufactured by licensed cannabis manufacturers that have met California’s testing and quality assurance requirements. AB 1529 has passed both houses of the legislature, and is pending review by Governor Gavin Newsom.
CCIA remains committed to working with state and local public health agencies to identify the cause of this illness. We are equally committed to working with state policymakers to help advance policies that eradicate the illicit market, ensure consumer safety and strengthen California’s compliant cannabis industry.
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