Due to global shortages of lab supplies, the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) will be temporarily adjusting testing protocols for medical cannabis products.
Laboratory supplies have been heavily impacted by supply chain disruptions related to COVID-19. Due to global shortages of filtered PCR clean pipette tips, commonly used in testing for SARS-CoV-2, pathogen testing capabilities using qPCR are limited. The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food has filed an emergency rule adjusting Section R68-29-8 Microbial Standards, effective April 29, 2021 through August 27, 2021.
UDAF Laboratories and other licensed medical cannabis testing laboratories will continue to be required to test for total aerobic microbial counts and total yeast and mold counts. However, the additional specific pathogens listed in Table 2 of Rule R68-29 may be tested for, at the discretion of the department. A sample and related lot or batch of cannabis plant product, cannabis concentrate, or cannabis product will continue to fail quality assurance testing for microbiological contaminants if the results exceed any of the limits set forth in Rule R68-29, Table 2. Testing fees for affected businesses will be reduced from $120 to $70 per sample.
“UDAF officials and other licensed laboratories will continue testing with available resources to ensure medical cannabis products remain available to patients and that those products are safe and meet quality assurance standards.” — UDAF Commissioner Craig W Buttars. As laboratory supplies become available the testing of cannabis samples for the specific pathogens listed in Table 2 will resume.