be_ixf;ym_202001 d_27; ct_50

Pesky Pesticides: Impacts for Cannabis Farmers and Consumers

It’s no secret cannabis has become an explosive industry. But, due in part to a murky legal landscape, it’s also been largely unregulated or improperly regulated. This means the same protective laws that work to ensure agricultural products are grown without harmful pesticides have not necessarily governed the hemp plant – and this has led to problems with pesticides in particular. Join Bluebird Botanicals as we explore the impacts of pesticides in cannabis for farmers and consumers.

Spray it ain’t so!

Unfortunately, cannabis-growing has often been synonymous with using a heaping supply of pesticides. This has included some pesticides that are only approved for ornamental plants (read: decorative or plants that should never be ingested by any method).

Man with Vegetables in Mask

Even more frighteningly, some of the pesticides formerly used for cannabis cultivation are associated with serious health and disease risks. Why? Because pesticides have meant that most, if not all, of the cannabis crop will make it to harvest, meaning the grower has a greater likelihood of scoring bigger profits from each growing season. 

Though the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for regulating agricultural pesticide use, medical and recreational cannabis is still considered an illegal drug at the federal level. Hemp just recently became legal and thus the EPA has not been able to approve or ban pesticides for use with hemp or cannabis. The legal limitations have also meant the EPA has not addressed the safety aspects of residual pesticides found in cannabis crops. This can be especially problematic when it comes to the hemp plant, which is a known bioaccumulator – meaning it’s great at absorbing things from its surrounding soil, nutrients and contaminants included. 

There are farms committed to growing hemp in pristine soils and without the use of pesticides. Bluebird Botanicals partners with such farmers to source the plant material for our CBD, as well as provides third-party lab test results so customers can verify they have a clean, safe product. 

[States] take the power back

The lack of federal guidance has led to a factioning of state laws. No two states have landed on the same set of regulations, meaning what customers can expect with regards to cannabis regulation can be vastly different, even in adjacent states. 

Though there are variations in how states are choosing to approach pesticide policy, states are working to provide more thorough guidelines on pesticide use for cannabis. As new evidence about the detriments of pesticides becomes more prevalent, individual states have been making legislative moves to prohibit certain harmful chemicals or – more often – to start spelling out exactly what is allowed. 

And these policies seem to be consistently being changed or updated. Colorado has established a list of allowable pesticides for cannabis to be in accordance with the statewide Pesticide Application Act that was updated as recently as October 30, 2019.

What does this mean for farmers?

The first challenge surrounding pesticide use in cannabis is successfully getting the hemp crop to harvest. Though this is really not as impactful as you may think, as hemp is a hearty crop all on its own, and fairly pest-resistant

Bluebird Botanicals Healthy Hemp Farm at Sunset

Keeping up with the regulations is another hurdle. As the industry continues to grow, change, and shift, it can be difficult for farmers to stay in-the-know with the current allowable practices around pesticides. 

Fortunately, Colorado tries to make it a bit easier. To make their changing regulations more accessible, you can sign up to be notified when the list of allowable pesticides is amended. But it can still be a challenge to implement changes in real-time or in the middle of a growing or production season.

Perhaps the most difficult challenge to address comes from Mother Nature herself: dealing with the elements. Even if one hemp farm is abiding by pesticide regulations and safely growing crops, there is the chance for overspray from neighboring farming operations to migrate over and contaminate the hemp crop. This can float in on the wind or trickle in through recycled water. 

The good news is that, as states better develop and enforce their pesticide policies, all hemp growers will have to abide by the same policies, decreasing the chances of a neighboring farm’s chemicals contaminating another crop.

Putting the “can” back in cannabis

While the federal legal landscape often seems to move at a snail’s pace, there is (hopefully) good news on the horizon. Following the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which made hemp federally legal, laces have loosened a smidge on the political gridlock and we’re starting to hear the murmurs of regulation shifts. 

Bluebird Botanicals Hands Holding Plant and Soil

There are entities like Clean Green Certified that do third-party testing for cannabis crops. Clean Green also certifies companies that are engaging in sustainable business practices. You can also look for companies that have undergone additional vetting like becoming Glyphosate Residue Free (the primary ingredient in known cancer-causing pesticide RoundUp) from the Detox Project. Bluebird Botanicals is not only certified Glyphosate Residue Free, but as mentioned provides all of our testing results online for customers to review at any time via our third-party lab tested batch database

While states are currently establishing disparate policies surrounding pesticide use for cannabis, the call for overarching federal regulations is sounding loudly from scientific researchers and hemp companies themselves. And, while it is a bit like trial and error – like a lot of things in the hemp industry – it seems likely that some states may be able to create a framework or model regulations for pesticides in cannabis that could be adapted to the federal level. 

Leave a Reply

More Products

Hemp Classic CBD OilOut of Stock

250+ mg cannabinoids per ounce. Hemp CBD oil extract & organic hemp seed oil.

Hemp Complete CBD OilOut of Stock

250+ mg raw & heated cannabinoids per ounce, plus hemp terpenes.

Bluebird Hemp SignatureOut of Stock

250+ mg cannabinoids per ounce. Classic blend plus frankincense & black seed oil.

Sample Pack
Hemp Sample PackOut of Stock

10 ml bottles of Classic, Complete & Signature. 250+ mg total cannabinoids.

$32.95 Details
Classic 6x
Hemp Classic 6x Concentrated CBD OilOut of Stock

1,500+ mg cannabinoids per ounce. Hemp extract & organic hemp seed oil.

Complete 6x
Hemp Oil Concentrate Complete 6xOut of Stock

1,500+ mg raw & heated cannabinoids per ounce, plus hemp terpenes.

Signature 6x
Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil Signature 6xOut of Stock

1,500+ mg cannabinoids per ounce. Classic blend with frankincense & black seed oil.

6x Sample Pack
Concentrated Hemp Oil Sample PackOut of Stock

10 ml bottles of Classic 6x, Complete 6x & Signature 6x. 1,500+ mg cannabinoids.

$129.95 Details
Hemp CBD Silk Lotion
Hemp CBD Silk LotionOut of Stock

Gentle CBD topical cream made with full-spectrum hemp extract, essential oils, jojoba, and coconut…

Hemp CBD Essential Lotion
Hemp CBD Essential LotionOut of Stock

CBD lotion made with full-spectrum hemp extract, jojoba, carrot, and coconut oil. Available in…

Hemp CBD Sport Lotion
Hemp CBD Sport LotionOut of Stock

CBD sports cream made with full-spectrum hemp extract, ginger, arnica, mint, jojoba, and coconut…

Hemp CBD Capsules
5mg CBD CapsulesOut of Stock

Hemp CBD capsules with full-spectrum hemp extract & organic virgin hemp seed oil. 5…

Concentrated CBD Capsules
Concentrated CBD CapsulesOut of Stock

CBD capsules with full-spectrum hemp extract & organic hemp seed oil. 15 mg of…

CBD Vape Juice
CBD Vape JuiceOut of Stock

CBD Vape Juice. 1,000+ mg cannabidiol (CBD) per ounce of vape juice.

CBD Isolate
CBD IsolateOut of Stock

96%-99.9% pure isolated cannabidiol (CBD). Always 3rd party lab tested.

CBD Isolate Wholesale
CBD Isolate WholesaleOut of Stock

96%-99.9% isolated cannabidiol (CBD). Bulk CBD isolates available at wholesale cost.

Prices shown include discount.
Companion Oil
Companion CBD Hemp Oil For Dogs & CatsOut of Stock

250 mg cannabinoids per ounce. CBD hemp oil & organic virgin hemp seed oil.

Companion Capsules
Companion CBD Capsules For PetsOut of Stock

CBD hemp extract & organic virgin hemp seed oil. 5 mg cannabinoids per soft…

Concentrated Companion Capsules
Concentrated Companion CBD CapsulesOut of Stock

CBD hemp extract & hemp seed oil. 15 mg of cannabinoids per soft gel…

THC Free CBD Oil
THC Free CBD OilOut of Stock

1500+ mg CBD per ounce. Hemp CBD isolate & organic fractionated coconut (MCT) oil…