Washington Cannabis Edible Rules Need Improvement

The Washington State Liquor Control Board released new rules for cannabis edibles that are sold in stores.
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Washington started allowing recreational retail stores to sell cannabis on July 7th. The rules allow cannabis edibles in some cases, but not all cases. Cannabis-infused brownies and cookies are OK, but cannabis-infused candies are not.

The reasoning behind allowing some cannabis-infused edible products to be sold, but not others? Cannabis-infused products that appeal to children will be prohibited. This seems kind of inconsistent and vague to me. Lollipops are prohibited because they will appeal to children. But don’t cookies and brownies appeal to children too? I know when I was a kid, getting my hands on a cookie or brownie was as high a priority as getting my hands on a candy bar.

Where is the line drawn? If the standard is that it can’t appeal to children, then it leaves the door open to prohibit just about anything. When I was a kid, I loved pizza, pasta, potatoes, and just about any other food I could get my hands on. Different kids have different preferences. Show me a food product, and chances are I can find a kid that likes it. To me, Washington’s edible rules are a slippery slope that are ripe with potential for arbitrary government regulations and prohibitions.

I’ll be the first to state that cannabis shouldn’t get into the hands of children. I am very much on board with creating rules and regulations that help achieve that goal. However, a person can only purchase those items by going to a licensed store, which checks ID before they let anyone frequent the establishment. The packages that are used clearly label what is inside, and make it clear that it’s not for consumption by children. Isn’t that enough?

There are alcohol products that are flavored to be similar to popular candies, yet they are not prohibited. How is that any different? Kids love whipped cream and cinnamon candies, and there are vodkas on liquor store shelves right now that are flavored to taste similar to those products. Does this mean that they should be banned? Of course not. Those products are only sold at licensed outlets that require ID. If those rules are good enough for alcohol, why aren’t they good enough for the cannabis industry?