Take the 'Pot Quiz': Can You Tell a Regular Cookie From a Legal Pot Cookie?
Dr. Marc Siegel stopped by Fox and Friends this morning to highlight the dangers posed to children by edible marijuana products. In states where marijuana is now legal, like Colorado, you can now buy pot in the form of cookies, brownies, lollipops and other "treats."
Siegel highlighted the fact that if one of these "medibles" is left out accidentally, it's almost impossible for an adult - let alone a young child - to tell the difference.
Furthermore, he said that a pot lollipop contains 10 times more marijuana than a regular joint, making it extremely dangerous for a child. In some instances, children have been rushed to the hospital due to breathing problems.
He said in Colorado, just one hospital has reported nine cases of kids being poisoned by these products since May.
He doesn't recommend simply child-proofing, saying the only surefire way to keep this away from your kids is not to buy it.
Take the pot quiz below. Can you tell which is the regular food product and which has marijuana in it?
Watch Dr. Siegel's analysis above.
(Answers: the pot products from from top to bottom are on the left, right, left.)
Meantime, activists in Colorado are demanding new regulations that will make pot products clearly distinguishable from regular food when the packaging is removed.
More on that effort below, via Reuters:
Activists in Colorado called on Thursday for the fast implementation of rules requiring marijuana-infused edibles be clearly distinguishable from regular products when removed from their original packaging.
Colorado and Washington this year became the first U.S. states to allow recreational sales of the drug to adult, and much of the public debate has since centered on regulations for edibles such as pot cookies, chocolates and drinks.
Members of Smart Colorado, a non-profit aimed at informing young people about the risks from marijuana, told a state law enforcement meeting in the city of Golden that there were many examples of accidental pot consumption, including by children.
A bill sponsored by Smart Colorado, which passed with bipartisan support, requires that by Jan. 1, 2016, the state adopt rules requiring pot edibles "be shaped, stamped, colored or otherwise marked with a standard symbol indicating that it contains marijuana," and is not for consumption by children.
Group co-founder Diane Carlson said in a statement that the purpose of the legislation was to address the "incredible risks, uncertainties, and confusion" surrounding products that she said are too often presented in a "highly deceptive" way.
"We want to reduce the number of accidental ingestions, especially among children, and give teenagers and adults the tools and support they need to protect themselves," she said.
Last month a state task force unveiled proposed rules to limit potency levels in marijuana edibles, require clearer labeling and health warnings, and assure youngsters cannot get their hands on them by making child-proof packaging mandatory.
The activists say marijuana is infused into, sprayed onto, and injected into over 200 kinds of edible products including candy, liquids, granola, cookies, and crackers, and that edibles account for about 40 percent of the state's retail pot market.
The topic has been particularly controversial given the potential of products such as brownies and candy for attracting children and pot novices, with possibly dangerous consequences.
Colorado lawmakers in May charged the task force, which is comprised of pot industry representatives, health professionals and law enforcement officials, with drafting new rules after two deaths possibly linked to pot-infused foods made headlines.
In a bid to raise standards, a national marijuana industry group last month launched the first ever food safety basics course for producers and retailers of pot edibles.