4 Reasons To Buy Cannabis From A State-Licensed Medical Dispensary
Hawaiʻi’s gorgeous climate provides a year-round growing season for most plants including cannabis.
However, our sub tropic conditions also enable pests and pathogens to flourish. For this reason, growing cannabis in the islands can be challenging. Pests, mold, and diseases can infest a cannabis crop of even the most experienced of home growers. Learning how to raise healthy plants with strong yields through trial and error takes time, effort and money.
Hawaiʻi registered cannabis patients may grow their own plants or designate a caregiver to grow on their behalf. So, why would a patient or caregiver purchase medical cannabis from a dispensary?
Cannabis and cannabis products purchased from a Hawaiʻi-licensed medical cannabis dispensary are required by law to be tested and certified by a third-party lab that the products are free of pesticides, fungicides, heavy metals, mycotoxins and all forms of microbial contamination. Certified lab results for each and every product are available for review in any state-licensed dispensary. The state of Hawaiʻi has some of the nation’s strictest lab testing standards for medical cannabis.
In an October 2017 article in the Honolulu Star Advertiser, Dana Ciccone, the head of the Steep Hill Hawaiʻi lab, said that at least 75 percent of homegrown cannabis grown in the islands contains yeast, mold and pesticides.   Consuming contaminated cannabis can be harmful especially, for immune compromised patients. A common pesticide used by some home growers, Eagle 20 (myclobutanil), a fungicide traditionally sprayed on grapes, almonds and strawberries, is a “general use pesticide.” Heating up this chemical, such as when smoking cannabis, converts it into poisonous hydrogen cyanide.
The only way to know for sure what is in your cannabis is to have it lab tested, or purchase from a licensed Hawaiʻi dispensary.
Hawaiʻi medical dispensaries offer cannabis and cannabis products developed specifically for medical usage. Strains and products available in a dispensary will vary in percentages of THC, CBD and combinations of the two. These offerings are cultivated and manufactured to satisfy the specific needs of patients to help manage their condition and/or symptoms. More importantly, certified lab results for content and potency for each product is available for patients to review prior to purchase.
3. Education & Guidance
Hawaiʻi-licensed medical cannabis dispensaries are staffed by trained personnel who can help patients decide which strains or products will best suit their condition, symptoms and lifestyle. For those new to medical cannabis, these caring staff members can advise on how patients can titrate their own dosage to find the optimal dose. Many HawaiʻI dispensaries develop their product lines with the advice of physicians and/or scientists familiar with the latest advances in medical cannabis research.
4. Convenience & Choice
Dispensaries offer a wide variety of strains, and methods of administration to manage approved qualifying conditions. Herbal cannabis is available for purchase in a variety of sizes to allow for “sampling” various strains before purchasing larger amounts. For the many patients who prefer not to smoke their cannabis, concentrates, tinctures, capsules, lozenges and even topical lotions are available for purchase. Certified Hawaiʻi patients may shop at any licensed dispensary on Oʻahu, Maui, Kauaʻi and the Big Island with the peace of mind that they are buying lab-tested, quality-assured cannabis and cannabis products.
Because Hawaiʻi has some of the most stringent medical cannabis guidelines and regulations in the nation, the products found in local dispensaries are extremely clean. Dispensaries must be diligent in every aspect of cultivation, manufacturing, packaging and storage practices to reduce the potential for contamination, or degradation. Medical cannabis dispensaries operate in controlled, secure environments as required by State law and regulations of the Hawaiʻi Department of Health to ensure Product Safety, Patient Safety & Public Safety.