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Hastings Business Law Journal

Authors

Alexis Lazzeri

Abstract

From the passage of Proposition 215 to present day, California’s cannabis industry has transformed from access solely for medical patients to a nearly three billion dollar a year industry with legal medicinal and adult-use consumption. With this rise in accessibility, edible cannabis products are being consumed more than ever. “Edibles” are food and drink products infused with cannabis, a mix of THC (i.e., delta 9 - tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (i.e., cannabidiol)—with varying levels of each, depending on the desired effect. CBD is a non-intoxicating compound often used to treat physical ailments and chronic conditions, while THC delivers a euphoric high. Edibles appeal to a consumer market that does not want to smoke to get high (increasingly, senior citizens), and can “account for 25 to 60 percent of a dispensary’s profits.” In 2016 alone, Californian’s consumed more than $180 million in cannabis-infused edibles. The edible market is competitive, having transformed from melted-down, mass-produced chocolate (where taste was an afterthought) to handmade chocolate bars with Tahitian vanilla beans.

This Note illuminates how even in the current regulated California environment, edible cannabis products can pose a serious risk to consumers if not properly made, labeled, and consumed, which may subsequently increase demand for product liability attorneys in the very near future.

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