Marijuana

Maryland Legalizes Medical Marijuana Edibles, With Caveats

Regulators are gearing up for a long debate about the size, shape, and other specifications of edibles.

|

In May, Maryland legalized edible forms of medical marijuana. But don't expect such products to be available in Maryland anytime soon. Regulators are gearing up for a long debate about exactly what shape these products can take, what they can look like, what packaging they can use, and how they can be marketed.

The new law "was careful not to classify such treats as 'food' for a reason," explains Doug Donovan at The Baltimore Sun. "Doing so would have required redundant oversight from the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission and the Department of Health's food safety division. Instead, as in 30 other states, edible cannabis products are now a class of their own."

Maryland authorities say they want to make sure edibles are used for medicinal purposes only, rather than recreationally. 

Medical marijuana was made available for legal distribution in Maryland in 2017. In February the Maryland General Assembly created a work group with the purpose of studying the potential of legalizing marijuana for recreational uses.

The Baltimore Sun reports that, "The bipartisan group will make recommendations at the end of December that could be used to develop bills for the 2020 legislative session."

Opponents of extending medical marijuana legalization to include edibles argue that this will encourage recreational use and pave the way for full legalization.

"I don't want to deprive anyone of their medication, but let's treat this like medicine, not make little gummy bears out of it," Sen. Robert Cassilly (R-Harford County) told the Sun. "You're just flirting with legalization."

The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission said it will likely take the rest of the year to develop rules for the "packaging, labeling, marketing, and appearance of edible cannabis products," with the goal being "to ensure the safety of minors."

In other states with legal marijuana, similar attempts to micromanage the edible market have been offered in the name of shielding youth from harm.

Last year, Washington state flirted with banning any edible that could be seen as appealing to children. The Seattle Stranger reported in October 2018 that regulators were considering a rule saying edible baked goods could not "contain any icing or sprinkles" and "chocolate cannot be sold in a shape that appeals to kids—it must be 'in the shape of a bar or ball.'"

The final version of the regulations, handed down by the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board in December, bans bright colors for edibles and their packaging. Products must use a "standard pantone color book that sets the list of colors and specified ranges within those colors," the board said.

"There will also be limits on the shapes, with exceptions for things like non-profit collaborations or naturally-occurring colors," KOMO Seattle reported in December.

In 2017, Colorado passed similar regulations with the defense of stopping edibles from "appealing to children" in the state. These regulations banned edible gummies in the shapes of animals, people, or fruit while adding regulations to how edibles must be packaged.

California also passed regulations in 2017 that limited the shape of edible cannabis products. The new rule states that "a cannabis product shall not be made in the shape of a person, animal, insect, or fruit" and put a 10 milligrams of THC cap on all edibles being sold.

NEXT: Originalism and the Law of the Past

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Funny how ‘legalization’ always looks like banning this or that based on appearance – – – –

  2. but let’s treat this like medicine, not make little gummy bears out of it,” Sen. Robert Cassilly (R-Harford County)

    Making them look like tic-tacs is somehow better?

    1. Call them gel tabs.

  3. Only your betters know what’s best for you, a mere subject of the state.

    1. Welcome to Maryland, the free state. LOL

  4. Sounds like puritanical HOAs, with sanctioned paint colors and shrubbery designs.

  5. Why do we trust politicians with our liberty again?

  6. >>>”chocolate cannot be sold in a shape that appeals to kids—it must be ‘in the shape of a bar or ball.'”

    hate to break it to you morons …

    1. You should not insult….

      morons like that.

  7. “I don’t want to deprive anyone of their medication, but let’s treat this like medicine, not make little gummy bears out of it,” Sen. Robert Cassilly (R-Harford County) told the Sun. “You’re just flirting with legalization.”

    “Oh, fuck it! Let’s just legalize!”

  8. Products must use a “standard pantone color book that sets the list of colors and specified ranges within those colors,” the board said.

    Oh, FFS! At least capitalize “pantone”, wiseacres.

    1. It’s pretty tasty so why is it only sold around Christmas?

  9. When they said “tax and regulate,” did you think they were joking?

  10. With caveats? Isn’t that like sheep’s lungs or calves’ pancreas or some offal French food? I can see why that would discourage people from buying marijuana edibles if you have to have it served with a side of disgusting inedibles.

    1. So only the caveat adorned edibles are legal? Seems silly.

  11. […] In May, Maryland legalized edible forms of medical marijuana. But don't expect such products to be available in Maryland anytime soon. Regulators … Source link […]

  12. Maryland really can’t get anything right. They’ll sometimes have the right general idea, but then fuck it all up something fierce.

  13. “Medical” marijuana is a joke.

    Not because it doesn’t have medical potential.

    Because it’s implementation is so poorly controlled by the medical community.

    What other psychotic hallucinogen that causes mental illness considered “medicine” and concocted, prescribed and administered by the patients?

    This is because Medical marijuana is simply the planned first step to legal recreational marijuana.

    1. Damned straight. The day Cannabis is legalized will be the day America is finally lost! Drug legalization isn’t about liberty or so-called “harm reduction” at all. It’s just a backdoor for the Leftist takeover of America. I say, give the people what they THINK they want: make pot so readily available and cheap that everyone starts smoking it and wait until they all turn psychotic. Then they’re easy pickings. God, I need a drink!

      In all seriousness, you may want to consider remedial medical education, as there is no such thing as a “psychotic hallucinogen.” Hallucinogens are chemicals, and chemicals are inanimate objects. Inanimate objects have no brain, and therefore cannot become psychotic.

      As for the old “Cannabis causes insanity” canard, please show a legitimate scientific study that conclusively proves your assertion and doesn’t originate with ONDCP, FoxNews or Kevin Sabet.

      Personally, I think we should wage war against acetaminophen and its users. 25% of Americans take it every week, and recent research from the University of Ohio demonstrates acetaminophen users experience an acute psychological reaction: they lose positive empathy during the time they medicate with the drug.

      And did you know that acetaminophen OD is the leading cause for calls to Poison Control Centers across the US—more than 100,000 instances per year? Each year, acetaminophen overdose is responsible for more than 56,000 emergency room visits, 2,600 hospitalizations, and an estimated 500 deaths due to acute liver failure. Even worse, acetaminophen poisoning is responsible for nearly HALF of ALL acute liver failure cases in the US. It can be toxic to your liver even at recommended doses when taken daily for just a couple of weeks!

      THERE is your killer, so ‘lock and load’…for the children!

      1. Please don’t give them any more ideas.

    2. Rob, why don’t you tell us how this is all a plot by the Jooooosssss?

  14. This fucking state will screw up a game of checkers (and tax the hell out of it).

    Now that Marion Barry is dead and unlikely to ever again become mayor, maybe I’ll move back into DC for a different style of jackassery.

  15. a long debate about the size, shape, and other specifications of edibles

    😉

  16. […] The Baltimore Sun reports that, “The bipartisan group will make recommendations at the end of December that could be used to develop bills for the 2020 legislative session.” [Read More @ Reason] […]

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.