Not too long ago, local cannabis dispensary Uncle Ike’s began randomly testing their product. They’ve since caught a few products that test over the limit of allowed pesticides or heavy metals. This month, the incredibly popular vape cartridge company Ionic was found to contain Myclobutanil, an ingredient used in Eagle 20. Myclobutanil is a common fungicide that is safe for consumption, yet it breaks down into hydrogen cyanide when given sufficient heat. This creates an alarming health and safety risk when put into your lungs and bloodstream.
Ike’s has taken the product from the shelves and publicly posted the results. According to the Colorado Green Lab, Myclobutanil is NOT approved for use on tobacco plants in the United States. Tobacco is the only other legal smokable product in the country. However, the substance is legal to use on cannabis plants in Washington at .200 parts per million and the Dutch Treat cartridges that were tested found .07 parts per million above the legally allowed limit.
Does The State Not Already Test For Pesticides?
The state of Washington runs on somewhat of a “good faith” pesticide testing process. They perform pesticide tests for up to 75 products a month. Uncle Ikes said that 30% of those products fail yet only 6 recalls have been counted since 2014. As long as cannabis is federally illegal, the EPA will not set standards for the safe use of pesticides.
What Do We Think?
We are currently in a race to the bottom for prices. Large companies are able to buy mass quantities of outdoor product from struggling farms at a bargain price in order to mass-produce distillate for vape cartridges. The grower, processor, and manufacturer of the final packaged good are not required to test every product.
We believe that the consumer has the right to know what they are putting in their body. Businesses need to be forthcoming with all the information to allow consumers to make an educated choice. Liability falls onto the grower of the raw material and processor in cases like this.
Cannabis is a federally illegal good and things like this hold back the world from taking this industry seriously. We would like to commend Uncle Ikes for spending the extra money and time to bring this to our attention and all who take this as seriously as we do.
On their website, they claim to be 100% organic, free from all pesticides and chemicals. We’re not only seeing this isn’t the case but we’re also seeing a lack of due diligence to uphold this company value while putting consumers at risk. Mistakes happen and big businesses will have room for error. We hope to see Ionic own and correct this mistake because they’re a large company spread out across the entire West Coast.
Uncle Ike’s will refund and accept returns on ALL Ionic Dutch Treat cartridges as long as products are in original packaging and returned to the location they were purchased at.
**This article is not intended to slander or hurt the business of any parties. This is simply to notify the public and raise awareness for consumers to know what they are putting in their body. This is their right and we are simply a medium.
To be clear from our original article. Ionic is a processor and NOT a grower. They purchased flower that contained unmarked traces of a legal substance allowed on cannabis that was slightly over the allotted level. Ionic has since notified us that while this substance is legal they do not condone the use on cannabis and are investigating where the substance originated from.
While the product itself does not contain cyanide. There was myclobutanil found in the product which turns to hydrogen cyanide when heated, which is what happens when a product is smoked or vaped.
Ionic’s CEO, John P. Gorst has since released a press release regarding this issue and Ionic’s next steps as a company to ensure this is an isolated incident. The company has now vowed to go above and beyond and fully test every product that comes into and out of their facility.
“While Washington does not require any pesticide testing, since our inception IONIC has implemented random testing for pesticides as a best practice. Discovering pesticides in the test results is unacceptable, and it’s why we are implementing a stricter form of mandatory testing moving forward. This is a lesson to us all, and the market in Washington, as to what can happen if we’re not vigilant with pesticide testing.
We are going to be even more proactive with our process, raising the bar with new standards as we have always done as leaders in the industry. Regardless of if a state requires such a serious level of testing or not, we will implement mandatory pesticide tests. Every batch will pass the IONIC standard, or it won’t see the light of day.
Effective immediately we will be doing a voluntary withdraw of product due to quality reasons. Since we are a small batch processor, this impact is limited. IONIC is proud of our integrity, and we are always humbled to learn how to continue to provide proven high-quality products with absolute transparency.”