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Potency increases in Oregon cannabis edibles

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Portland, Ore — Cannabis consumers in Oregon shopping for THC infused edibles will soon find some products available for purchase that are more potent than previously allowed. Consumers should take notice of the increased amount of THC per serving in these products so they can choose a product that gives them a desired effect without unwanted side effects.

Beginning April 1, 2022, edibles sold through Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC) licensed stores can now contain packages up to 100mg THC and 10mg THC per serving. The previous limit was 50mg THC per package and 5mg per serving. Under OLCC rules, edibles containing the lower THC amounts remain available for sale. The change aligns with the potency allowances of most other states allowing the sale of adult-use cannabis.

Solid edibles that exceed 55mg THC in the package must now be scored so that it’s easy for a consumer to determine a portion size. As an example, a chocolate bar could be scored or marked up into ten equal portions, or a bag of gummies could contain 10 individual gummies each containing a portion of THC. (See OLCC Information Bulletin IB2022-03)

To date, the OLCC has approved labels for 30 products containing 100mg edibles, including chocolate bars, cookies, cereal bars and gummies.

With increased THC potency comes an increased effect from using these products so consumers should be more aware of potential side effects, especially in the event of over consumption. Since THC products became more readily available in Oregon calls to the Oregon Poison Control (OPC) have increased.

In the most recent data available from 2019, 34 percent of the 386 calls to OPC about cannabis exposure were due to edible consumption. Of the 223 calls in 2019 that were about children, teens and young adults under 21 years old, almost 60 percent were related to edibles. About half of the all of the 386 calls required serious medical attention because of moderate or major health effects.

The Oregon Health Authority and OLCC recommends that cannabis edible consumers, especially first-time users, consume in a safe place with someone not using cannabis, start with a small serving, and give themselves time to react to the THC. Consumers should call the Poison Center, at 1-800-222-1222, if they or someone they’re with is experiencing an adverse reaction.

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