Dozens of synthetic cannabis brands have been cleared for sale by health regulators, despite some containing chemicals linked to psychosis.
Note the difference between the drug being linked and a chemical within it being linked.
On Wednesday, the same day that police charged the first person with selling synthetic cannabis illegally, the Ministry of Health cleared nearly 50 shops to continue to sell similar, but approved, legal highs.
The ministry says 28 legal-high brands have now received interim approval. Approval was given if the brand had been on the market for more than three months without users reporting any serious adverse side-effects.
A sensible approach.
Grant Hall, of legal-high industry body Star Trust, said the brands received only a provisional tick and many would probably not pass the higher hurdle for permanent approval later in the year.
However, the bad side-effects associated with synthetic-cannabis products had been overblown, particularly when compared with alcohol, he said. “By any measure, these products are incredibly low risk.”
Yeah, there is almost a hysterical lynch mob mentality forming in some areas around them.
The products can be sold only through approved stores, with 46 shops receiving interim licences as of yesterday. Another 147 can continue to trade while their applications are being assessed.
In Wellington, 21 retailers can still legally sell synthetic cannabis.
Ten companies have also received interim licences to manufacture legal highs, seven to research them, and 23 to sell them wholesale.
That’s a surprisingly high number of manufacturers, researchers and wholesalers. I wonder what the total turnover of the market is?