In their newly released report, "The Key to Consumer Safety: Displacing the Illicit Cannabis Market, Recommendations for Safe Vaping," the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) digs into the recent health crisis caused by fake cannabis vapes. They examine the roots of the issue, its severity, and suggest ways that the industry can fight back.
The NCIA accurately assesses the wide-reaching threat of the illegal cannabis market. They note that in California, illegal retailers outnumber licensed businesses 3:1 and in Massachusetts, 75% of all cannabis sales were expected to be from unlicensed sources. The link between black market cannabis and the threat to consumer safety is also well established in the report, "Public health experts have concluded that additives from the illicit market appear to be the primary cause of this crisis... more than 2,600 people have become ill because of these counterfeit cartridges."
The report notes how counterfeit packaging and labels play a role in this dangerous phenomenon, "Unscrupulous vape cartridge vendors perpetuate the problem by willingly and knowingly manufacturing cartridges and placing them in counterfeit packaging." This point cannot be understated and needs to be recognized and acted upon by product creators, consumers, and regulators. This threat continues to grow and the increasingly clever tactics employed by illicit manufacturers must be countered with technologies like solo*.
solo* applauds the NCIA's goals of making cannabis safer. We hope the rest of the industry takes their recommendations to heart, and works to support their well-researched conclusion, "We must stop the flow of illicit, unregulated, and untested products to consumers. That is the ultimate solution to the vaping crisis."