Attorney General William Tong on Tuesday issued a warning to families and individuals alike that cannabis products made to resemble candies and other food products can not be sold in Connecticut and also pose serious dangers to consumers because of the amount of THC they contain.
When recreational cannabis sale begins in Connecticut in 2022, lookalike cannabis products will be illegal. By statute, cannabis manufacturers won't be able to use bright colors or anything that could entice young people to want to try them.
“What’s happening and we’re seeing more of this not just in Conneticut, but across the county is the proliferation of fake, illegal and often extremely dangerous products that look like food, candy, snack products that we’re all familiar with,” said Tong at a news conference in Hartford.
“The packaging has to be completely white. We don’t want these colorful types of designs. It needs to be white with black font,” said Michelle Seagull, commissioner for the Department of Consumer Protection.
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Hartford Dad Alex Cotto was shocked to learn that a picture of what he thought was a candy wrapper was actually for cannabis.
“No way. For real? I can't believe that. It raises concerns because I wouldn’t want him to think it’s candy and then end up eating it or something,” he said.
But the same stringent rules aren’t in place across the border in Massachusetts. The attorney general says he’s prepared to pursue anyone who tries to sell these items here.
“We will take action against anybody who sells these illegal products here in Connecticut criminal and civil and consumer protection authorities,” said Tong.
DeVaughn Ward is senior legislative counsel at the Marijuana Policy Project, which advocates sensible cannabis policy nationwide. He says the patchwork approach to legalization highlights the need for federal policy on cannabis that can keep children safe and this emerging market strong.
"The reality is that another state is selling products like this and there is somewhat of a demand and so it's trying to strike that balance between, you know, balancing public health and safety and having a robust market,” said Ward.
To learn more about the rules and regulations of recreational cannabis sales and use in CT, visit www.ct.gov/cannabis.