Gaps in Testing Represent Weaknesses in Cannabis Control Commission ~ IN YOUR CORNER with AUDITOR DIZOGLIO


At the end of September, my office released an audit of the Cannabis Control Commission (CCC), diving into a commission that has the responsibility to build up oversight over a nascent industry. As this industry has evolved, so too has the CCC.

This most recent audit specifically honed in on whether the CCC is ensuring that recreational cannabis products are meeting the safety standards set by both law and regulation. This included a review of the processes used by the CCC to support the safety of products purchased by consumers.

Current laws and regulations provide for protocols meant to protect consumers, and include requirements that cannabis products are free from contaminants. Contaminants that the CCC tests for include metals, like lead, arsenic, and mercury; pesticides; solvents; and microbial agents, such as mycotoxins, which can be produced by molds or fungi.

The CCC is responsible for enforcing the retesting products after a certain period of time has passed. These tests hold retailers accountable to providing safe, quality products to consumers to protect public health.

Our audit included the review of more than 160,000 packages that were tested by the CCC during the audit period. Almost 1% of those packages included some amount of product that had passed its expiration date regarding testing.

State regulations are clear – product that exceeds one year between testing shall be considered expired.

The audit also identified that the CCC did not properly ensure that all marijuana establishments and independent testing laboratories reported positive pesticide tests to the CCC within 72 hours, as required by law.

These gaps in testing represent weaknesses in the CCC’s current systems charged with protecting the public’s health regarding contaminated product. The CCC has confirmed that they are taking steps to implement changes and improve policies and procedures to reflect most of our recommendations, further strengthening safeguards for consumers.

We will be following up in the coming months to ensure accountability on behalf of taxpayers.

Yours in service, Diana ◊