Medical Marijuana Edibles

September 4th, 2013 by Will Humble Leave a reply »

Last week I posted a blog that points out that the words “Marijuana” in the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act and “Cannabis” in the Arizona Criminal Code have different definitions…  and that the distinction may be an important one for Qualifying Patients. 

The major difference is that the definition of “Useable Marijuana” in AMMA includes “… dried flowers of the marijuana plant, and any mixture or preparation thereof…” without specifically addressing the “resins” and “extracts” identified in the Criminal Code.



  1. rootney says:

    Then is the criminal code going to be changed as well, or is every cop /judge going to leave to their interpretation. Get no knocks for smoke smell when we have a card. Criminal codes need to change or be modified to protect the patients rights. Use some of the cash the dept of health is getting from prop 203 to work on prop 203 issues and not your salary.

    • James says:

      It’s not DHS’ responsibility to change anything! It didn’t write the law. The problem is the criminal code, not the AMMA.

      It’s our industry’s responsibility and we need to get responsible and stop whining!

  2. gary says:

    The major difference is that the definition of “Useable Marijuana” in AMMA includes “… dried flowers of the marijuana plant, and any mixture or preparation thereof…” without specifically addressing the “resins” and “extracts” identified in the Criminal Code.
    DOES AZDHS have a definition of ANY that differs from ANY definition of ANY that ANYone who ever took an English class ANYwhere in the world?

    • Fiasco says:


      These guys are higher than any of the patients toking on that prop 203… It makes ZERO sense. Thank you Arizona for being so darn ignorant to logic. ANY other medical state has concentrates… ANY! All other medical states have similar wording in their criminal code. The other states just have more “common” sense. If AZDHS chooses to take the police side of this argument someone will need to put it before a judge and blow the pooey out of that ambiguity… Goodbye 25 mile rule! Nice knowing ya!!!

  3. Bill H says:

    Let’s start with some basics shall we?

    prop 203
    “G. State law should make a distinction between the medical and nonmedical uses of marijuana. Hence, *the purpose of this act is to protect patients with debilitating medical conditions, as well as their physicians and providers, from arrest and prosecution, criminal and other penalties and property forfeiture if such patients engage in the medical use of marijuana.”

    ok, next…

    Definition of ANY
    : one or some indiscriminately of whatever kind:
    a : one or another taken at random
    b : every —used to indicate one selected without restriction
    : one, some, or all indiscriminately of whatever quantity:
    a : one or more —used to indicate an undetermined number or amount
    b : all —used to indicate a maximum or whole
    c : a or some without reference to quantity or extent
    a : unmeasured or unlimited in amount, number, or extent
    b : appreciably large or extended

    ok…everyone on the same page here?!

    here’s another…

    Definition of ALL
    a : the whole amount, quantity, or extent of
    b : as much as possible
    : every member or individual component of
    : the whole number or sum of
    : every
    : any whatever
    : nothing but : only:
    a : completely taken up with, given to, or absorbed by
    b : having or seeming to have (some physical feature) in conspicuous excess or prominence
    c : paying full attention with
    dialect : used up : entirely consumed —used especially of food and drink
    : being more than one person or thing
    — all the
    : as much of … as : as much of a … as
    whole, concentrated, entire, exclusive, focused (also focussed), undivided

    diffuse, divided, scattered

    Related Words
    absolute, complete, full, lump, teetotal, thorough, total, unadulterated, unalloyed, unqualified, utter; comprehensive, intact, integral, perfect, unbroken

    Near Antonyms
    deficient, fragmental, fragmentary, halfway, incomplete, partial

    still with me?? seeing a trend??

    back to prop 203 definitions …


    So let’s take a hard look at these words, “DRIED FLOWERS OF THE MARIJUANA PLANT, AND ANY MIXTURE OR PREPARATION THEREOF” in specific “preparation thereof”.

    As I pointed out in your last blog statement Mr Humble, every person that uses a grinder to separate the dried flowers of the cannabis plant into a more useable form could potentially be in violation of a narcotics statute because the grinder collects the resin as it grinds and separates the cannabis. So whether a patient is rolling a joint or loading a bowl, using a grinder to assist in the process is a narcotics violation? Doesn’t make much sense does it sir?

    To further the point I am attempting to make here, I offer the following…

    “According to the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, a qualifying patient may not consume medical marijuana at a dispensary but may eat medical marijuana in foods or use infused products at other locations. State law lists places where a qualifying patient may not smoke medical marijuana, including public places.” Those are your words sir.

    “use infused products” and “may not smoke medical marijuana” suggest there are other forms than the “edible” form you discuss in this blog post. Topical treatments as well as concentrated products meant for ingestion via inhalation methods are widely used and have a extremely well documented roll in our society and culture.
    To act as if they were not intended on being included in the intent of prop 203 is comical at best considering the author’s background.

    You yourself were recently down in Tucson visiting some dispensaries were you not? I believe you made some statements regarding the health benefits of edibles and topicals, did you not Mr Humble??

    When dispensary owners that have invested large sums of money in “infusion kitchens” start a class action lawsuit against the Police and most likely one against AZDHS as well, what will you say on the stand Mr Humble??

    Will you say you believed the perceived intent of the proposition was to include concentrated products like hash and hash oil at the time in which the rules package was promulgated by your office and that is why you included the wording you did in the requirements for dispensary owners regarding “marijuana infused edible products” and “marijuana infused non edible products”..?

    As well as, “Dispensaries must obtain a written authorization along with a Food Establishment License before preparing, selling or dispensing marijuana-infused edible food products.”
    Notice the word “preparing” as in “preparation thereof” Mr Humble. Are you familiar with the “preparation process” regarding cannabis infused foods, which includes extracting the desired compounds from the source material, aka the “dried flowers”??

    If more examples of how confusing you have made this were needed sir, there are plenty.

    “A dispensary may obtain edible food products containing marijuana in two ways: it can obtain them from another dispensary or prepare the edible food products itself, following applicable food and drink requirements.” again “prepare” is used.

    ” “Medical use” means the acquisition, possession, cultivation, manufacture, use, administration, delivery, transfer or transportation of marijuana or paraphernalia relating to the administration of marijuana to treat or alleviate a registered qualifying patient’s debilitating medical condition or symptoms associated with the patient’s debilitating medical condition.”

    “manufacture” from Black’s Law, “What is MANUFACTURE?

    v. The primary meaning of this word is “making with the hand,” but this definitiou is too narrow for its present use. Its meaning has expanded as workmanship and art have advanced, so that now nearly all artificial products of human industry, nearly all such materials as have acquired changed conditions or new and specific combinations, whether from the direct action of the human hand, from chemical processes devised and directed by human skill, or by the employment of machinery, are now commonly designated as “manufactured.” Carlin v. Western Assur. Co., 57 Md. 526, 40 Am. Rep. 440;
    Evening Journal Ass’n v. State Board of Assessors, 47 N. J. Law, 36, 54 Am. Rep. 114;
    Attorney General v. Lorrnan, 59 Mich. 157, 26 N. W. 311. 60 Am. Rep. 287;
    Kidd v. Pearson, 128 U. S. 1, 9 Sup. Ct. 6, 32 L. Ed. 346.

    I could go on for days.

    think I proved my point though.

    No person in their right mind could possibly conceive the words above as anything other than there implied and expressed meaning relating to the topic of origin.

    In all practical uses and commonly accepted uses, “any” means “any” and “all” means “all” just like “mixture or preparation thereof” has also been well defined via the legal system.

    If you need help writing rules that will work, as a professional in the industry next time.

  4. Cody says:

    Honestly, it feels like you have absolutely no idea what you are doing or writing, or you are intentionally meddling with and usurping the will of the voters.

    After last week’s blog where you tell me that marijuana and cannabis are different in the eyes of the law, I have little to no faith left. I voted to legalize the illegal cannabis plant for medical use, not the imaginary plant that you have somehow determined to be different than the only cannabis plant I have ever known.

    The nerve to tell everyone to lawyer up if your obvious double talk confuses or worries them. The only thing that concerns or worries me is that you feel you have the authority to pick and chose, regardless of how the people have voted, and tell me that the exact same cannabis plant that is legal for card carrying patients is legal and at the same time somehow illegal.

    I hope you decide to quit with the knit picking and do your job for the patients who rely on you for sensible regulations that protect the patient and allow for safe access to medication. I do not appreciate your routine injections of ignorance into the Arizona medical program. Please, for the sake of law abiding, seriously ill patients across Arizona, stop rewriting the law, the people have spoken.

    • James says:

      I understand your frustration. We are all frustrated and I rarely side with DHS, however this confusion really isn’t DHS or Dir. Humble’s fault. The problem is in the CRIMINAL CODE – not the AMMA.

      Even if DHS declares tomorrow ALL EXTRACTIONS AND INFUSIONS ARE LEGAL UNDER THE AMMA, that doesn’t change the language of the criminal code. It is the criminal code that classifies anything infused with marijuana as illegal.

      There should have been an exception for MMJ written in Prop. 203 and there wasn’t – that was the drafters of the law’s issue, not DHS.

      If we truly want to become a respected industry, we need to take responsibility, and it is the industry’s responsibility to get the law corrected. We – ie dispensary licensees – who should seek a declaratory judgment that states “this section of the criminal code does not apply to the AMMA”. It is really all it takes and the patients who are supporting their businesses should demand their support.

      Trust me, I know that there are plenty of issues with DHS – for example it accepts any document presented to it without any inquiry or without checking its voracity. That’s a major issue.

      The issue of extractions is one that the industry needs to correct…and save criticism of DHS for other issues!

      • anonymous says:

        The real responsibility lies in the fact that citizens of Arizona voted in a bad MMJ act. It was riddled with imperfections, like the 25 mile rule for one and involving the state to run a monopoly for profit that is now being mass boycotted and starved of funding by the citizens that voted it in and didn’t read the fine print. We just wanted compassion laws in this state, we over looked things like common sense, monopolies and violations of our state constitution not to mention our federal one. Boil this down…we made nature illegal for corporate synthetic markets to have no natural competition back in Mellon and Ansliners day. It is time to rectify that mistake as we have seen the harm that making nature and one of our greatest natural resources illegal has done to this world. It is mans great arrogance and ignorance that he feel he knows the delicate balance of our Eco-system better than Mother Nature. All that support any type of prohibition are doing so out of fear or greed. We will boycott the system while we fight it out in court to improve the laws, while focusing on legalizing for recreation with campaigns like Safer Arizona and we will REMOVE the people from their government positions who use and support these current systems and support ignorance and arrogance on their war on Mother Nature…unless they decide to educate themselves and become experts in the field of things they are trying to regulate…otherwise we hire new people and get new representatives. The time is here to make some serious decisions for these people if they want to keep their jobs.

  5. Glorious Herbs says:

    Mr. Humble the problem is that you and you’re staff are not educated enough on any of these matters to make guidelines. I am not trying to be harsh just state the obvious lets face it you guys are just learning facts the majority of advocates have known for years. We as Patients should have the right to medicate with the substance the people of the state voted for in any way that works best.

    I heard of a guy in flagstaff who was supposedly writing the guidance for concentrates and he was going to make it so it was okay to use C02 but not butane. Is there any truth to that and if so does ADHS know that c02 extraction machines are extremely costly and actually not as effective as butane according to a group of doctors who study these subjects for a living that when done properly there are no negative effects of extracting with butane.

  6. Paul says:

    So we are allowed to open a infusion center but we are not allowed to do any infusion?

    Let me help you out a bit:

    in·fu·sion -noun

    1.a drink, remedy, or extract prepared by soaking the leaves of a plant or herb in liquid.

    Get it together guys..

  7. Cathy says:

    Knowledge is an important part of all this. Learn and help the patients please.

  8. Glorious Herbs says:

    With each passing month, the popularity – and controversy – of butane hash oil (BHO) and the phenomenon surrounding it (known as “dabbing”) continues to grow in the cannabis community. Some hail it as a miracle medicine, a quantum leap forward in stoner evolution. Others criticize it, pointing to the potential dangers involved in both making and ingesting it, as well as possible negative effects on the public’s increasingly favorable attitude toward marijuana. Here at HIGH TIMES, it’s our duty to cover this issue as honestly and responsibly as we can – addressing any genuine concerns and dispelling unwarranted fears. To that end, we consulted some of the industry’s most knowledgeable experts on the subject of cannabis extracts and their effect on the human body. Here’s what they had to say.

    Solvent vs Nonsolvent Extraction

    The first question to be addressed is: What’s the difference between solvent extracts and traditional hash? Well, aside from appearance, the biggest difference is the process involved in making them. While traditional hash is made using sieves (wet or dry) to separate the trichomes from the plant, extract hash is made by “blasting” a chemical solvent (i.e., butane, CO2) through the plant matter, then “purging” the solvent away. But these solvents don’t just extract the trichomes – they also pull substances from other parts of the plant.

    “You’re getting a lot of extra goodies that come out in those solvent extracts,” observes Bob Melamede, Ph.D. An associate professor of biology at the University of Colorado and the president/CEO of Cannabis Science Inc., Dr. Melamede is one of the world’s few experts on the human endocannabinoid system. “Aside from the oils, there are all sorts of compounds that come out that probably have beneficial value,” he says. “We’ve got indications that there are differences in the effects, pain relief properties and potentially other important phenomena. We don’t really know at this point … all we know is that this plant is quite the magical chemistry set.”

    It’s also widely believed that BHO boasts a higher concentration of THC and is therefore much stronger than traditional hashish. But is this really true? As the cannabis critic for Denver’s Westword alt-newspaper, William Breathes is paid to sample and review a wide array of cannabis products – and according to his experience, it is stronger. “When you look at the percentage of cannabinoids per weight, it seems you’re pulling out more THC with butane than with ice water,” he says.

    But there are those who disagree – such as Selecta Nikka T, owner and operator of Colorado’s Essential Extracts. “It’s such a new phenomenon that we really don’t have enough data to show that BHO is getting higher test results than water extraction of the same strain, or if there are any dangers to it,” he asserts. “I prefer the solventless method, because we can retain terpenes a lot better than most solvents, and I don’t have to worry about anything being left over in my product.”

    Another of Denver’s extraction experts is Daniel “Big D” de Sailles, a partner at Top Shelf Extracts, who isn’t quite as skeptical. “I’m a 100 percent proponent of BHO, because I’ve seen it make people’s pain just evaporate,” he states. “As medicine, it helps with both harm reduction – it practically cures withdrawal symptoms in people who are alcoholics or addicted to speed or pharmaceuticals – and pain management. It works every single time, and it’s easier to regulate your dosage. You take a fraction of a percent of a gram, and you’re fully medicated and exactly where you want to be.”

    So which is better, butane or solventless? Until more analysis is done comparing the chemical composition of the plant material to the solvent extracts, we won’t know the real differences. But according to Amarimed of Colorado’s Alan Shackelford, MD, it’s not really a matter of “better” or “worse” – just what suits a patient’s individual needs and preferences.

    “There isn’t necessarily one method that’s superior to another,” he explains. “Concentrates can be provided in a variety of ways … different options for different conditions that vary from person to person, as it should be.”

    Butane and the Body

    One of the biggest concerns regarding BHO is that inhaling butane might be unhealthy.

    de Sailles isn’t convinced. “Butane is used in so many things we buy,” he points out, “like hairspray, cooking spray, e-cigarettes, flavor extracts … so it’s already around.” Even so, the fact that butane is present in a number of consumer products doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s safe.

    Fortunately, both Dr. Melamede and Dr. Shackelford seem to agree that it is. “I looked through the National Library of Medicine database on this, and there isn’t any evidence that inhaling residual hydrocarbons like butane are dangerous – at least in small amounts,” says Dr. Melamede. “It’s an irritant, but that’s about it.”

    But if we eliminate butane as a risk, are there other dangers involved in using BHO? “There’s very good evidence that smoking marijuana doesn’t harm the lungs, and I’m quite sure that smoking concentrates doesn’t either,” says Dr. Shackelford. “The only real negative would be overdosing, which might make you uncomfortable for a while, maybe a little anxious or paranoid … but as far as a long-lasting physiological danger? I don’t think so.”

    “I’ve seen people consistently do 25 half-gram hits and not have any adverse side effects,” de Sailles argues. “BHO has been around since the year 2000, so people have been dabbing for a decade now and there haven’t been any real problems reported yet.”

    But, in fact, we know of at least one serious problem that has been reported: Last year, a young woman named Jessi was “blowing nails” of BHO when her throat suddenly swelled up, making it difficult to breathe. She was rushed to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with chemical epiglottitis, a condition in which the epiglott – the flap of skin that separates the esophagus from your trachea – becomes inflamed by an irritant (i.e. infection, heat, chemicals) and blocks off the windpipe. Luckily, Jessi was treated in time; if she hadn’t been, the condition could have been fatal. So if this is a possible consequence of dabbing – even one experienced by only a tiny percentage of users – people need to be aware of it. But what actually caused this reaction?

    “I very much doubt it was the butane or concentrate at all, but some other factor,” Dr. Shackelford says. “The volatile evaporative temperature of butane is extremely low – so if you’re heating it up, that butane is pretty much gone; any residual wouldn’t be a problem. There are a lot of different things it could’ve been … maybe it was just the temperature. You can actually get epiglottitis from hot coffee if you swallow it incorrectly.”

    “I’d say the least likely of all was that it had anything to do with the butane,” Dr. Melamede concurs. “It could’ve been contaminants in the product … she might’ve had an allergy to something else that was concentrated.”

    Blasting Flowers

    It’s widely agreed that the most dangerous aspect of BHO is making it – or, rather, not making it properly. There have been numerous reports of people causing large explosions while attempting butane extractions without taking the necessary precautions.

    “These dangers are real,” says Selecta Nikka T. “People are blowing up their homes. So if we’re going to continue doing this – which I’m sure we are – we need to take into account all the safety precautions needed for this process.”

    Let’s be clear about this: HIGH TIMES strongly discourages anyone who has not been professionally trained from making BHO on their own. However, we realize that some people out there are going to do it – and if so, we want them to recognize that they need to do it responsibly.

    “There are two ways to go about using butane to extract,” explains de Sailles. “There’s an open system, where you take a tube, you fill it with trim, you stick in a can of butane in one side and then filter it through coffee filters into a pan, where you purge it. That’s the open system, and that’s what people are doing inside and blowing themselves up. The other way – a closed system – is when you get a machine that actually recycles the butane. That’s a lot safer, but you should still be in a well-ventilated area.”

    Being outdoors is key, because the butane vapor that evaporates is highly flammable and can be ignited even by something as seemingly harmless as static electricity. Making BHO indoors is like asking to be blown up. (Think about it – they don’t call it “blasting” for nothing.)

    “It happens,” Breathes admits. “I’m not going to argue that it doesn’t blow up and that people aren’t stupid; there are plenty of videos on the Internet to prove that. If you want to do it right, the info is out there … all we can do is advocate responsibility.”

    “You can’t legislate intelligence or responsibility,” Dr. Shackelford agrees. “That’s the problem: We have to protect ourselves from ourselves – but we can’t.” Then he raises another caveat: the composition of the tube that holds the weed.

    “It’s important to use stainless steel, not PVC piping,” he stresses. “Plastic is always a potential problem. Butane extracts all kinds of stuff, and you don’t want polyvinyl chloride in your concentrate.” Even when doing water or bubblehash extractions, he adds, it’s important to use food-grade plastics: “If you’re just using some orange bucket you bought at Home Depot, you’re likely to extract unwanted chemicals such as hardeners from the plastic. If it’s an industrial product and not food-grade, just assume that there’s going to be dangerous stuff in it.”

    Gaseous Anomalies

    The most common impurities usually arise from “dirty” butane. The fuel sold for use in lighters is only about 80 percent butane and contains chemicals that smell (such as thiols – also known as mercaptans – or sulfur dioxide), which are added so that leaks can be detected. Since these chemicals will taint the taste and purity of your extract and can be harmful if ingested, this kind of butane should never be used. Only butane that’s quadruple-refined or better is suitable for use – and even then, you can’t always be sure what you’re getting, since there’s no across-the-board standards for purity.

    “There are all these companies coming out of Korea now and other places that are saying [their butane is] ‘five times refined,’ ‘three times refined’ – but who really knows what type of refinery process they’re using?” warns Nikka T. “Their ‘five times refined’ may not be as clean as, say, Colibri’s ‘three times refined.’”

    So how can BHO makers know which products are best to use? According to de Sailles, that testing has already been done. “The knowledge base that’s online right now is extensive,” he says. “People have tested every single one, and so far Vector and Colibri are the two choice brands for making BHO. I personally use Vector 5x, but I’m in the process of switching over to pure n-butane.”

    Pure n-butane (C4H10) is medical or laboratory-grade butane, which is available at 99.9 percent purity. It evaporates completely at a low temperature (-0.5oC), so the chances of residue are slim, and such residue would be pretty much tasteless and harmless. But there’s a downside: Pure n-butane is sold only in large quantities (five to 485-lb. cylinders) by gas-supply companies and is fairly expensive. Considering that you only need around eight ounces of butane for each ounce of cannabis, this isn’t an option most would-be blasters would opt for.

    The Purge

    After the extraction, your concentrate must be purged of whatever solvent remains in it. In an open system, this can be tricky – and dangerous.

    “I make sure to blast into a pan that’s already floating in fairly hot water, where you put your finger in and have to pull it out after a second,” says de Sailles. “You’ll see the butane bubble away and evaporate, and what’s left over are big, thick bubbles, which you then have to pop. It’ll usually take about two or three water changes until there’s not enough butane left in it to do anything and you can actually take it inside.”

    “How fast you get that butane out of your concentrate matters a lot,” he adds. “One of the problems with closed systems is that it takes up to an hour to recover the butane – so that whole time, your extract is soaking in solvent. If you leave extracts soaking too long, it can cause the cell membranes to rupture. So I try to get it out as quick as possible.”

    In a closed system, the extractor machine will “vacuum-purge” the solvent from the concentrate. In theory, this method is safer and more reliable, but in reality, that’s not always so.

    “A lot of people playing around with vacuum-purging don’t know what they’re getting into,” says Selecta Nikka T. “People are getting vacuums and pumps and chambers that aren’t completely sealing, or they’re not getting strong enough of a vacuum. I’ve even seen some material still crackle after just having water stuck in it from the vacuum chamber.”

    “If it makes a crackling sound when you heat it, you know for sure it’s dirty,” de Sailles cautions. “The heat is burning the solvent, so it makes a sizzling sound like water in a hot skillet. If it’s sizzling, then there’s a problem with the technique of the person who’s making it. If they couldn’t keep the water out of it, I wouldn’t trust their extraction skills.”

    Purity Of Product

    Nearly everyone agrees that the only serious health risk posed by smoking BHO is the possibility of ingesting harmful contaminants that may have been infused into the concentrate during the extraction process.

    “The biggest concern is the quality of the marijuana – who’s been growing it and what they used,” says Dr. Melamede. “If you have contaminants (i.e., pesticides, herbicides, fungi) on your plant, that’s going to come off into the extract. Then, when you evaporate the solvent, you’ll actually be concentrating those things – and that’s the real danger. Pesticides are typically extremely nasty in how they can affect your nervous and immune systems, so you definitely don’t want to be consuming that.”

    As if incompetent blasters weren’t enough, one must also be wary of criminals out to make a quick buck selling bogus product. “You have a whole spectrum of unscrupulous people out there who are going to do whatever to try to make money,” says Dr. Melamede. “I personally wouldn’t use any cannabis product if I didn’t know who produced it and/or hadn’t had it properly analyzed.”

    One perfect example: a video that Breathes posted on his blog in which he drops a chunk of “shatter” (brittle BHO) onto a hot nail, only to have it flame up high enough to scorch his face if he’d actually tried to inhale it. Later that week, Breathes had the sample tested and was shocked to learn that it contained only 10 percent cannabinoids (compared with 50 to 75 percent in most concentrates). What the other 90 percent was – and who was responsible for making this dangerous pseudo-hash – has yet to be determined.

    Metal Fume Fever

    Another concern that’s recently come up is whether or not the metal nails used for dabbing might – under heat and over time – oxidize or flake, forcing the user to inhale toxic dust or fumes. Such a situation might cause a condition called “metal fume fever,” whose symptoms include chills, nausea, headaches, fever and muscle pain. But according to our experts, if the nail is pure titanium or quartz, the chances of that happening are slim to none.

    “If [the nail] was made with lower-grade metal rather than Grade 2, commercially pure titanium, it could flake off,” de Sailles warns. “But as far as titanium oxidizing, it’s supposed to naturally change color a bit over time. As far as I know, there’s no adverse side effects to that.”

    “Whether there are any adverse effects, I don’t think anybody really knows,” Dr. Shackelford says a bit more circumspectly. “But titanium is in a lot of different things – it’s in yogurt; titanium oxide is a coloring agent in sunscreen; and most frequently it’s used in implantable joint-replacement devices – so there’s probably not much of a danger.”

    Blowtorch Blowback

    Assuming we’re able to dismiss the health risks, there is still the public-relations issue: namely, that because the techniques used to make and consume BHO bear an eerie resemblance to those used for harder drugs like meth and crack – and because its potency is so much higher than regular weed – dabbing is ripe for exploitation by the prohibition propaganda machine. At a time when the acceptance of marijuana among the general public is higher than ever, there’s a fear that seeing teenagers wielding blowtorches or blowing themselves up on the evening news might incite a new anti-pot paranoia that could set the legalization movement back decades.

    Breathes discounts such concerns as mere growing pains in cannabis’ perceptual evolution. “People have been smoking hot knives in HIGH TIMES for 40 years, and it’s really the same premise,” he says. “It’s just a progression, a matter of technology. Maybe people got scared when glass pipes became big or headshops became big. There’s always going to be something to scare the people who want to be scared. Those people are probably turned off by cannabis in the first place and probably aren’t too open-minded.”

    “It’s just about being honest and transparent and showing it in a positive way,” Breathes adds. “It’s the same as weed; it’s just stronger. There are people using it recreationally, and that’s wonderful, but we’re looking at it as a new way of medicating. For somebody who’s really sick – battling nausea, for example – maybe choking down a whole joint isn’t for them. Vaping one little hit of oil or solventless wax is so potent all at once, it’s great medicine. We need to talk about that – that’s how we bring it to the public and stop people from being scared of it.”

    For his part, de Sailles offers the following prediction with a chuckle: “More and more people are using vape pens and e-cigs to smoke their oils – so I imagine that will be more socially acceptable than a blowtorch.”

    Or perhaps we can just say, as one promotional sticker so insouciantly puts it, “Relax, bro – it’s just a blowtorch.”

  9. Bill H says:

    Since THIS conversation is currently about “edibles” allow me to point out another flaw in the rules and regs, as well as the AMMA.

    If dispensaries cannot allow marijuana use on site, how will the kitchen staff of these facilities “test” their products for proper flavoring and or seasoning once the cannabis has been infused??

    Anyone working in an infusion facility (which should have a separate permit from an actual kitchen where food is prepared) would be in violation of the AMMA if they “taste test” their products as ANY (there’s that word again) good chef would do regularly throughout the creative process.

    Did anyone think of that?? Probably not in this state but it has been addressed in a few others.

    There are MANY problems with this current version of the AMMA that should and will eventually be dealt with. What you need to ask yourself Will, and the rest of AZDHS, is which side of the fence will you be on??

    The patient’s side, where compassion and good health are the ultimate goals.

    Or, will you side with that of the state prosecution team which is twisting your rules and regulations to continue to prevent patients form having safe access to medical marijuana.
    You do remember the stated purpose of the AMMA, don’t you?

    You are aware you are employed with the Department of Health Services, and when it comes to “health” there is a common rule of medicine, that rule states “do no harm”.

    Look at CNN’s Gupta special on medical marijuana, again, and again, then look at the cbs 5 video of little Zander Welton and his parents begging for help from the medical marijuana community, then you tell me Will, azdhs et al, do you think the rules and regulations you have in place are sufficient to uphold the stated purpose of the AMMA??

    Or are they hindering the spirit as well as the letter of the law??

    Do the right thing folks, you really have no other option in the end either way.

    Which side of the fence folks?

    We are your neighbors, your congregation, your school board, your EMT staff, your security software specialists, we are your taxi drivers, we are your pilots, we are your entertainers, we are your actors, we are your media, we are your cleaners, we are your little league coaches, we are the working class, we are retired, we are your family, we are your friends, we are religious and non-religious, we are democrats and we are republicans, we are independents, we are conservatives and we are liberals. We are your children, we are your parents and their parents; look around you folks.

    When it hits home, if it hasn’t already, when it hits home and you are effected will you be able to sleep with the decisions you have made?

    I couldn’t but hey, that’s just me.

    Had my letter/email been read by AZDHS during the public comment period, much if not all of this could have been avoided.

    what a shame.

    Bill H

  10. MJ is Political Issue says:

    “You’re getting a lot of extra goodies that come out in those solvent extracts,” observes Bob Melamede, Ph.D. An associate professor of biology at the University of Colorado and the president/CEO of Cannabis Science Inc.,

    That is a joke. Anybody who smokes butane hash for more than a few months will notice sensitivity in their teeth, blisters, bleeding from their teeth or cheek, and nausea/vomiting.

    If I were dying of cancer, I wouldn’t care if my teeth bled… but if I’m trying to avoid pain/nausea then a co2 extraction (usually too weak) or dry ice extraction then pressed (my favorite) is better from a health standard.

    Don’t forget that butane extractions can contain the leaves or unsmokable flowering buds. The thought that somebody might be blasting with butane and a large cast iron pipe/glass in their kitchen next door scares me as many folks use ether to “purify” and lets face is AZDHS dropped the ball when they are criticizing tinctures/edibles/dry ice hash when the real problem (from every angle) is butane hash.

    Maybe what Mr. Humble doesn’t understand is that when you use the whole flower in your brownies, you cannot even chew and swallow your brownie cuz it’s mostly leaf and tastes bad.

    If Mr. Humble would go to:
    and read 2801 (8) and (9) which says:


  11. bill says:

    One last thing to put this into perspective for people NOT familiar with butane or other extraction methods. If you drink decaf coffee, if you drink soda of any kind, if you drink a powdered tea mix in the summer, if you drink any of these you are drinking more butane and propane than you would EVER find in a medical marijuana tincture or wax toke, hash hit, whatever.

    By way of proof I offer the following…

    Just keeping it real :-)

  12. Doug says:

    “We’re developing guidance to clarify these issues for licensed dispensaries. The guidance will provide clarity regarding extraction processes for mixing and/or preparing edibles and liquid suspensions from the dried flowers of the marijuana plant. We expect to have the guidance by mid-September.”

    So, what have you come up with? anything?

  13. MJ is Political Issue says:

    The problem isn’t eating Butane, it is smoking or inhaling Butane. More people are dying every year by inhaling Butane. Just try smoking wax yourself… you will have vomiting/bloody teeth in a short few months. Very dangerous. Plus nobody smokes their blood pressure medicine.

    What Mr. Humble and AZDHS are not paying attention to is:


    People NEED to be able to cultivate their own strain to eat raw or use dry ice to make their own edibles. This is safe.

    AZDHS should be giving “license to cultivate” just like a bakers license or barber license because this is a learned skill with a large investment. Patients have the right to their preferred “route of administration” of raw leaves/concentrate pressed blonde hash or any means of obtaining their preferred strain. The law doesn’t really require a patient to have a card if you read it closely and AZDHS claims (on the back of their card) that they offer no “legal protection” which wasn’t in prop 203.

    Patients should NOT have the right to use “hay weed” or “non-smokalbe buds” and blast in their kitchen some wax that sells for a ripoff at $25 to $65 per gram.

    AZDHS and its employees don’t think mj is a real medicine – that is why they use the MJ fund to go after patients to take away their cards. (last time i wrote about this my post didn’t get published).

    People need to realize MJ is here to stay and start using it in a healthy way for medicine in this state.

    If you want to use MJ for a party, then go to Cali. If you need MJ for medical use to get off opiates, et cetera… then this state is good for that as soon as AZDHS gets sued enough times.

    Let people grow their own strain and develop a “grower license” and even inspect people’s homes. right now there is a price fix (monopoly) as not one dispensary is operating legally (nonprofit) with valid growsights.

    ps – If AZDHS doesn’t post this ad. I will keep it and post it on another site letting everybody see all the posts that AZDHS refuses to post.

  14. Doug says:

    “We’re developing guidance to clarify these issues for licensed dispensaries. The guidance will provide clarity regarding extraction processes for mixing and/or preparing edibles and liquid suspensions from the dried flowers of the marijuana plant. We expect to have the guidance by mid-September.”

    So, what have you come up with? anything?

  15. James says:

    It doesn’t matter what DHS comes up with because it has NO, NONE, NADA jurisdiction over the criminal code – and the police enforce the criminal code.

    There are no if’s, and’s or but’s about it – unless the industry goes to court and gets clarification, the AMMA as it relates to extractions is going to remain nonsensical!

    • Doug says:

      Isn’t DHS Licensing kitchens that do extractions? If they have a state license to do it, how can State police arrest them? I know the feds can do anyhing in the Sate that they want, but how can State agencies arrest for something licensed by the State? But more to the point, Mr. Humble stated that he was going to clarify this and gave a time frame that is 2 weeks past. I was just asking what progress if any they had made.

  16. Doug says:

    Now I see the original blog has been edited from “mid September”, to “sometime in October”. I guess we won’t here anything until November.

  17. markabley136 says:

    Good description given about Medical Marijuana given in this blog , it shows that how dry flowers of marijuana plant are used for medicines.

  18. bill says:

    Just ask me what’s going on. It’s my case.

    This topic is addressed in my motion, the most recent.

  19. Michael Totty says:

    You keep saying you can’t just change the AMMA but you are working on new guidelines about medical edibles. Explain this Director Humble, how can you say one thing and then do the exact opposite. The AMMA says the i can use flowers, or any mixture or preparation there of, why then do we need more rules about it a medical edible is a preparation there of?

    • Will Humble says:


      The bottom line is that there’s a difference between the definitions of Cannabis in the state’s Title 13 Criminal Code and the definitions used in the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act. Our upcoming objective is to provide some guidance to dispensaries about ways to navigate that difference. An article in today’s New Times sheds some light on this issue:

      • bill says:

        Thanks for keeping the patients updated Mr Humble, I’ll try to do the same as the case moves forward.

        The case of “narcotic v medicine” goes to court on the 24th of this month. The only way we will get clarification on this issue is if the state doesn’t drop the charges against me first.
        If they don’t, a judge will hear the case and make a decision.

        Aside from that I don’t see how a jury of twelve of my peers will convict anyone for having hash or edibles or any “mixture or preparation thereof”once they have been read the law as it reads, not as was suggested by the state’s expert witness to the grand jury. (He left off the words ‘mixture or preparation thereof’ when he read the definition in the AMMA!

        Lol. Misleading at best. Motion to dismiss had been filled and will most likely prevail however that only helps me not ALL the patients.

        Mark my words, they will drop it to prosecute an easier target, period.

  20. MJ is Political Issue says:

    By not allowing edibles, Will Humble and AZDHS are literally forcing patients to smoke their medicine. How hypocritical for The Department of HEALTH Services to write rules that prefer patients smoke their medicine.

    Title 13 Criminal Code was written in the 1970s for Opinionated/Heroin Hash – not for pot brownies or cannabis lozenge.

    AZDHS has the power (in their Rulemaking) to allow patients affordable non-smokable medicine. Instead AZDHS doesn’t even think about quality control, non-profit for dispensaries, or patient privacy. AZDHS also uses the Medical Marijuana fund to revoke patient cards through a large and expensive Phoenix Law Firm.

    If AZDHS doesn’t post my ad (everytime I write about the MJ Fund they don’t post my ad) I am going to compile it and post it on another website.

  21. encee says:

    Does any one have the latest status of the lawsuit filed by the ACLU-AZ challenging the ban on concentrates?

    Also, co2 extraction done as super critical doors not leave any “goodies behind” as a previous person wrote. I’m fact, it’s the only method that is prop 203 compliant as it’s written.

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