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Member Bulletin – November 11, 2019

Our November general meeting will, once again, be packed with information about the legislative and regulatory landscape, including the current conversation as it pertains to vaping.

In addition, we will have two presenters:

Nick Jikomes, Leafly’s principal research scientist, will discuss how Leafly is using lab-verified data to reimagine cannabis strains. Nick will discuss how they want to work with cannabis brands to empower cannabis consumers with more reliable information to find the right cannabis for them.

And, the HR committee will be giving a very important presentation on worker safety and pesticide use. With no less than 3 regulatory bodies — Washington Liquor and Cannabis Board, Washington Department of Agriculture, L&I – DOSH (Department of Health & Safety) — overseeing your compliance it is imperative you know the rules. Presenters: Matthew Clark, Think Happy Consulting & Brent Eberhardt, Safety and Health Consultant, Dept. of Labor and Industries, Div. of Occupational Safety and Health, State of Washington/

Reminder: December Meeting in Las Vegas

Join us Tuesday December 10th, at 10am in room N206 From MJBiz Con in Las Vegas!

In December we will streaming our meeting LIVE from MJBiz Con in Las Vegas. As a member you can watch for free via our web link, or join us in room N206 at 10am on December 10th.

ALSO, members of The Alliance get $100 off registration. Grab your discount at: Enter code: TCA100

Because of this change we will not be holding our traditional 2nd Thursday meeting in December. We will be back to our normal schedule in January with our Noon meeting on January 9th.

Here are some of the latest updates and work being completed in our google groups. As a member you have access to these groups and we would love you to be part of the discussion. If you are a member and not reciving google group updates please request to join here.

Below are my top takeaways from the Cannabis Science Task Force Steering Committee meeting held at Ecology HQ last Friday. As a representative of the Cannabis Alliance on the Steering Committee, I welcome comments and feedback from any member of the Alliance.

The Steering Committee unanimously approved the Task Force charter, attached.

Analytical Committee (methods)

Reminder: for 2019, the scope of the analytical committee is (and this comes from the bill that created the task force) “pesticides in plants.”

Any topics outside of that scope are being put in the parking lot for future discussion

In 2020, the scope of the task force will become “additional laboratory quality standards, including, but not limited to, heavy metals in and potency of marijuana products.”

As a further reminder: the task force is scoped to “activities that take place within the physical walls of the laboratory.” That means sampling is out of scope. Additionally, the task force does not have the authority to address which products get tested, for what, when, and what the limits are. Those questions are still entirely within the authority of the LCB (and to a lesser extent, the DOH). The task force is solely focused on methods that laboratories use… and proficiency testing.

The analytical committee has several broad topics being debated right now:

  • The Analytical Work Group has recommended use of the United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Marketing Service, Science Technology Pesticide Data Program and has provided a draft version with markup. The USDA/AMS/PDP is a performance-based program (not methods based), meaning labs are authorized to use their own methods, but must conform to rigorous validation and ongoing QC requirements.
  • The Steering Committee unanimously approved the USDA/AMS/PDP as the model document for the Analytical Work Group.
  • Resolving conflicts that have arisen in the Analytical Work Group, the Steering Committee unanimously approved the following assertions:
    • Maintain the current United States Department of Agriculture standards for freezers and traceability and have the Analytical Workgroup put details into their document for final approval.
    • Adopt as a minimum for the Analytical Workgroup, the United States Department of Agriculture Pesticide Data Program standards for calibrations.
  • Who is the Client?
    • “The Client” is an important definition that doesn’t appear to be defined anywhere in law or rule, currently. For compliance samples, the client is not the licensee, the client is the state, and the state needs to officially designate a person, agency, or regulatory body to act as the client. The client sets the requirements for laboratories, and the task force is creating the framework for how laboratories are assessed against those requirements. For non-mandatory samples, the client is the paying customer, and in those cases the laboratory requirements are to be negotiated between the lab and the customer, privately.
  • What is the commodity?
    • Debate has ensued over how many commodities cannabis plant material entails.
      On one side, the WSDA has assumed that there are three commodities:

      • “High THC” is a recreational drug that pot heads use for fun.
      • “High THC/ High CBD” is potentially medicine.
      • “High CBD” is medicine.
  • On the other side, the labs on the task force have pushed back saying that in their eyes (as analytical chemists who measure the plant’s properties) it is not important what the end-use might be, and we usually don’t know that anyway. In our eyes, cannabis flower is one commodity with much diversity; THC and CBD are not the only two characteristics of importance, nor are they the only potential interferences in a cannabis pesticide analytical method.

Proficiency Testing Committee

Still mostly in discovery phase.

In full understanding that “in-matrix” PTs are essential to the validity of the test.

Brainstormed three potential courses of action:

  • Work with existing PT providers to try and persuade them to create in-state, in-matrix PTs. The government cannot compel a private business (such as a PT provider) to offer a particular service.
  • Put out an RFP for a contractor to develop an in-matrix PT for the state
  • Develop an in-state PT within the agency, using agency resources

Provided a reference document describing the current landscape of capabilities among the agencies involved (attached)

Hello everyone,
Here are some observations from the Wednesday November 6th Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) Executive Management Team public meeting.

My top 3 takeaways:

  • Director of Legislative Relations Chris Thompson provided an update on the legislative landscape including a focus on vapor products, agency request legislation submitted to the Governor, and anticipated cannabis policymaking in 2020.
  • Agency leadership reviewed upcoming meetings including a gathering of the Cannabis Advisory Council, and Board Chair Jane Rushford shared observations from the annual state prevention summit.
  • A business advertising cannabis delivery in Washington in potential violation of state law caught the attention of Board Member Russ Hauge.

View associated documents, listen to recordings, and access the complete summary on our website Cannabis.Observer where you can also sign up for notifications via email, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Look good while boosting Cannabis Observer at our merchandise shop!

Warmest Regards,
Bailey Hirschburg

This just in. The LCB just sent over revised proposed legislation for the social equity bill. Everything is attached to this post. Please let us know if you have any thoughts or comments.

On Friday, September 6, 2019 at 12:09:14 PM UTC-7, Kyle Capizzi wrote:

Given experience over the last 3-5 years, does “the policy is set, just buy in.” surprise any of us at this point? Disappointing but not surprising…

Well, my comments were made in good faith, but I’m also fine with strategically cornering the LCB if legislature and the governor have any incentive to do so. Now that Inslee’s adventure in national politics is over maybe we’ll have a sympathetic ear since he used us for grandstanding on expungement of (a limited number of) misdemeanor marijuana convictions

On Fri, Sep 6, 2019, 11:09 AM John Kingsbury wrote:

It is clear to me that when the puzzle was assembled on her chart, she did not want to consult with the stakeholders. My conversations with the Board over the past two weeks have absolutely convinced me that they did not want consultation. They just want the puzzle to stay intact.

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