Washington State Settles With Unicorn Brands Following Synthetic THC Probe

Washington Liquor and Cannabis Commission Said It reached a settlement with Unicorn Brands LLC over a year-long investigation and multiple Administrative Violations Notices (AVNs) into making synthetic-derived THC from hemp and distributing it into the state-regulated cannabis market, it said Wednesday. Announced.

The board said Unicorn Brands “cooperated with the investigation” and halted the conversion process in question. Last summer, the Liquor and Cannabis Commission issued a policy statement that “clarified that THC derived synthetically from hemp is prohibited under current regulations and laws.”

“This is an important case for the integrity of the legal cannabis system that voters approved a decade ago, and the carefully controlled cannabis production, processing, and sale to adults that thrives in Washington today. system,” said David Postman, Chairman of the Liquor and Cannabis Commission. In an email to his state’s marijuana license holders, he reminded the companies of the “prohibition of diversion to laboratories related to the unicorn incident.”

Last October, the Board’s Education Executive Office issued an Administrative Violations Notice to the Unicorn brand for four violations in the consolidation process. ”

Under the terms of a “comprehensive settlement” between the two, the board said Unicorn Brands “won’t resume hemp-to-THC conversion and put an end to a long and complicated investigation.”

The board provided details On the back-and-forth ahead of this week’s settlement.

“After extensive negotiations, the agency and Unicorn have agreed to settle these lawsuits. Agreed,” the board said in a statement. “Instead, Unicorn stipulates and fully admits three remaining violations: license misuse, non-compliant extraction, and failure of traceability. , agreed to accept the forfeiture of seized products, and waive further administrative review.Finally, Unicorn will not “unless expressly stated otherwise” from hemp-based sources in Washington State. You agree not to use the license to produce or manufacture delta-8 THC, delta-9 THC, or similar synthetically produced THC.” Approved by subsequent changes in state law allowing licensees to do so. ”

The case highlights the concerns surrounding the burgeoning Delta-8 market, with state regulators across the country struggling to keep tabs on the new (and sometimes illegal) product.

In a press release Wednesday, the Liquor and Cannabis Commission called on lawmakers in Washington to take steps to provide greater regulation on its front.

“The next important step in protecting public health is eliminating the burgeoning market for Delta 8 products and other synthetically derived products outside of regulated markets. , in convenience stores and online, are sold illegally in Washington State and across the country, and we hope Congress in 2023 will take action to end these illegal sales,” the board said. I’m here.

Delta-8 regulation isn’t the only pressing issue facing Washington’s cannabis industry. The state saw a spike in armed robberies of cannabis stores earlier this year. This is a problem due to large amounts of cash on hand at such retailers.

A spokesperson for the Liquor and Cannabis Commission said in February that agencies were asking pharmacy owners to “employ armed security guards, make frequent cash deposits to ensure stores don’t have too much cash, and have staff in stores.” Post a sign explaining the inaccessibility,” he said. Clearly communicate safety guidelines to staff so they know what to do in the event of a robbery. ”

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