Troy Boquette, the general manager of Freddie's Joint, a marijuana store in Clio, arrived Friday, April 15, to learn of the THC-infused blue-raspberry gummies his store purchased the day before, which was put on hold by the state licensing agency.
Other flavors were added to the list by noon. Sky Labs, a licensed marijuana company that specializes in producing edibles, was on hold by the Cannabis Regulatory Agency, previously the Marijuana Regulatory Agency. This week, the gummies came from a licensed marijuana processor named Sky Labs.
This is not something that we would even be able to comment on, said a spokesperson for the Cannabis Regulator Agency (CRA) on Friday. We cant acknowledge or confirm an investigation, said the spokesman. I cant discuss this topic with you.
Attorney Denise-Policella, who represents Sky Labs, said the hold on all of the company's products, worth in excess of $5 million, was put without explanation about 4 p.m. Thursday, April 14.
"They received a call from a customer, and virtually all of their products went on administrative hold," policella said. The CRA said it "said it's related to an investigation. It does not appear to be a public health or safety issue, but I'm speculating because they did not issue a recall."
When a product is placed on hold, it theoretically prohibits transfer and sales; however, Boquette said his point-of-sale system does not automatically flag marijuana sales that is on hold in the statewide surveillance system. His employees perform daily checks on inventory to ensure product is safe and clear for sale. If products are placed on hold during the business day, it is possible they may be missed and sold to customers.
Boquette isn't sure why the marijuana products in question are on hold.
THC oil concentrates are used to make edibles and vaping products, which are often less susceptible to health safety hazards, because it is separated from the living plant material that is more easily contaminated. However, the process used to extract THC does require the use of potentially toxic solvents, such as ethanol, benzene, and acetone, that may, if not removed correctly, pose a risk to consumers.
The licensed safety laboratories have already tested samples of the on-hold products for the presence of solvents, according to Boquette. It must have been completed by state testing to make it to us.
Policella said the products that were put on hold at Sky Labs all seem to be from the same licensed marijuana manufacturer, which includes a product that has been tested and shipped to retailers in the United States. Due to her attorney-client privilege, she would not release the building's name.
According to Policella, this administrative prey, and unknown others like it, which occur regularly in the industry, would result in unconstitutional seizures without a chance for a proper execution.
They do these for months and months at a time, she said. Sky Labs previously had a batch of product on hold by the CRA for 13 months, and we still dont know why.
Policella believes that the CRA's unwillingness to issue a formal recall on the product may be attributed to a recent court dispute in which a Court of Claims judge questioned some of the CRA's actions prior to the last November.
It is my opinion that the (CRA) does not have the authority to deprive companies of their products, and it has the capability to deport people out of business and blame it on... an ongoing investigation that they are not required to disclose the details.
Sky Lab was accused of underreporting vaping cartridges it manufactured, which resulted in the product being sold to consumers without thorough safety testing. Sky Labs said the underreporting was a result of a data entry error.
More on MLive: