- Legal cannabis market likely to be plagued by poor quality control
- DNAX technology tracks all stages of cannabis supply chain
- Platform already deployed by biosciences company
Liberalization may be bringing cannabis consumption out of the shadows, but large parts of the supply chain remain hidden – an inconspicuous circumstance that poses great risk to consumers. In New Haven, Connecticut, about 100 people overdosed on “synthetic marijuana” recently, and they may have had no idea that their pot was “synthetic.” Synthetic marijuana can be made to look like the real thing. Technology from BLOCKStrain Technology Corp. (TSX.V: DNAX) (OTC: BKKSF) may have saved these unfortunate individuals from such dire straits. The company’s blockchain system can accurately track all stages of the cannabis supply chain and all aspects of quality control. It could make licensed cannabis retailers and dispensaries as safe as houses.
It’s not good practice to shop for weed in a park, the course of action taken by the 100 or so people who succumbed to the noxious effects of the manufactured variant. Synthetic marijuana, also called K2 or Spice, is composed of a mix selected from a grab bag of chemicals designed to stimulate cannabinoid receptor sites in the brain (http://cnw.fm/5avT4). These synthetic cannabinoid chemicals were first created as research tools to study the brain but are now finding their way into recreational use. Many formulations originate in Asian laboratories. They are purchased by cartels or street dealers, who use them to spray inert plant material before passing off the final product as marijuana.
Cannabis bought through a licensed retailer should be safer, but it may not always be. Although cannabis marketed to the public is subject to testing, state regulatory requirements vary and, more disturbingly, so too does the quality of services provided by the testing industry. The labs that provide these services assess THC levels and test for the presence of plant disease and contaminants. They are an essential aspect of effective regulatory oversight and are expected to abide by state-instituted standards in their testing procedures. However, since the facilities are neither graded nor regularly inspected, it’s difficult to say to what extent compliance is observed. As a result, the industry is plagued by lax practices that may allow substandard or fake cannabis to get to consumers. The need for a system like the one developed by DNAX is becoming more pressing as use of marijuana grows.
Regulators are acutely aware of the risks posed by present supply channels, and so a primary goal is to “establish an efficient, accountable and transparent system for regulatory oversight of the supply chain”, as noted in “The Final Report of the Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation” published by the Canadian government (http://cnw.fm/UYY2j). To accomplish this, requires a system that collects and manages a tremendous amount of data, including pesticide use and quality control, as well as possession limits and servings sizes in order to validate and verify products.
DNAX’s BLOCKStrain platform can do all that and more. The technology can provide the integrity that the current system so sorely lacks. It goes further by ensuring product authenticity and IP protection with a genetics verification process. Using BLOCKStrain is also likely to enhance brand reputation. Producers and marketers can take advantage of this novel methodology by submitting the lab results of tested samples to BLOCKStrain. Each time an item is tested and verified by the network, a registration affidavit is auto-generated and given a unique “BLOCKStrain Address” along with a traceable QR Code. Producers, patients and consumers are able to not only verify the test but also rate the product, write reviews and share opinions. These details are stored within BLOCKStrain and, like the test results, cannot be tampered with or modified. Both verification and certification are earned by all parties for their participation. Moreover, pre-existing data on genetic cannabis strains can be submitted to the BLOCKStrain verification administrators, and those results will be added to the user’s blockchain account.
BLOCKStrain has already deployed the technology. Recently, it announced that it had signed a letter of intent to integrate its proprietary technology into Abattis’s product and services ecosystem (http://cnw.fm/ZP7gq). Through this collaboration, the parties hope to enable Abattis’ clients to instantly arrange for sales, shipping, testing and analysis of Abattis products, giving those clients comprehensive visibility over such products throughout their entire lifecycles. Abattis is a life sciences and biotechnology company that aggregates, integrates and invests in cannabis technologies and biotechnology services for the legal cannabis industry in Canada.
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.BLOCKStrain.io
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