Bill Proposed to Make Edibles Legal for Medical Marijuana Patients

GARDINER, ME - AUGUST 21: Chocolate containing 10 mg of THC extract, made by the Wellness Connection of Maine in Gardiner, photographed on Wednesday, August 21, 2019. (Staff photo by Gregory Rec/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images)

By Ashley Adams

April 12, 2022

Sen. Dan Laughlin wants to see Pennsylvania join the 25 other states with medical marijuana laws that allow the sale and consumption of edibles by medical marijuana patients.

Cannabis edibles are the time-release capsule of the medical marijuana industry and patients in Pennsylvania might soon be able to purchase them.

Sen. Dan Laughlin (R-Erie) plans to introduce legislation to make medical cannabis edibles legal for purchase by medical marijuana patients. Currently, medical marijuana can be purchased only in the form of pills, oils, topicals, dry leaf, tinctures, and liquids. 

“Pennsylvania’s patients should be able to buy edible medical cannabis that is safe, uniform and securely packaged and labeled, just as they do in 25 other states that have legalized medical cannabis,” Laughlin said in a written statement. “For many patients, their medical conditions require gradual relief over an extended period of time. Consuming medical cannabis in edible form is among the best ways to achieve the time-release effect that these patients need.”

The state prohibits cannabis grower/processors from producing medical cannabis in the form of food products, and licensed dispensaries can’t sell such products.

Laughlin acknowledged that some patients use their medical marijuana to make their own edibles such as cookies and brownies. 

“But incorporating medical cannabis into food is complex and patients may not evenly disperse the marijuana’s active ingredients throughout their food which impairs their ability to get uniform relief from their symptoms,” Laughlin said.

Laughlin said his legislation will ensure edibles are tested for consistency and designed in a way that doesn’t appeal to children. There would also be strict regulations on edible packaging to prevent accidental use.

Over 400,000 Pennsylvanians have active medical marijuana cards.

“For many patients, edibles offer an easy and appropriate way to get relief from their medical conditions, and that’s always been the goal of medical cannabis: providing relief to patients,” said Laughlin.

Laughlin also introduced Senate Bill 1024 earlier this year, which would allow medical marijuana patients to grow a small amount of cannabis for personal use.Last year, he became the first Republican in the state Legislature to co-sponsor a bill, along with state Sen. Sharif Street (D-Philadelphia) to legalize recreational marijuana.

Author

  • Ashley Adams

    In her 16 years in the communications industry, Ashley Adams has worn many hats, including news reporter, public relations writer, marketing specialist, copy editor and technical writer. Ashley grew up in Berks County and has since returned to her roots to raise her three children.

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