More Than One in Five Tenth Graders Have Consumed Edible Marijuana: Study
A new study finds more than one in five tenth graders have consumed edible marijuana, and more than one in 10 have vaped it.
Law enforcement officials are reporting an increase in marijuana-infused edible products being transported illegally across state lines for resale.
Edibles resemble candy or home-baked products, and often have no smell that indicates they contain marijuana, The New York Times reports. Missouri troopers confiscated 400 pounds of commercially made marijuana chocolate in February. New Jersey state police seized 80 pounds of homemade marijuana sweets. Oklahoma officers seized about 40 pounds of commercial marijuana products, including taffy-like “Cheeba Chews” and bottles of marijuana-infused lemonade.
In Colorado, where recreational marijuana is legal for adults 21 and over, edible marijuana products have become a popular alternative to smoking marijuana. Adults 21 and over can legally purchase marijuana edibles at state-licensed stores. Marijuana is now available in products ranging from candy to soda and granola. The amount of marijuana in edible products varies widely. In some cases, products contain levels so high that people experience extreme paranoia and anxiety.
The high produced by edible products comes on more slowly than smoked marijuana. Inexperienced users may consume too much, causing severe impairment. Some experts are concerned that marijuana edibles smuggled into other states may appeal to teens.
Colorado health officials are trying to find a way to prevent people from overdosing on marijuana edibles. The products have been implicated in two suicides and one murder in the past 13 months. Almost five million edibles were sold in Colorado stores last year.
Marijuana edibles are also legal in Washington state, and will soon be legal in Oregon and Alaska. Edible products are also available to medical marijuana users in at least six of the 23 states with medical marijuana programs, the article notes.