Legislature warns Denver: Hands off marijuana pesticide regulation

Before they adjourned on May 6, the Colorado General Assembly sent a little warning to the city of Denver: Pesticide regulations are the purview of the state, not the city.

In March, the City of Denver’s Department of Environmental Health inspected 10 marijuana grow facilities. It required several growers to quarantine their plants based on pesticide use the department considered dangerous for human consumption. One grower had to quarantine 60,000 plants, which means they cannot be sold for people to consume. Losses for the growers could total in the millions, since some plants can be valued up to $1,000 each.

The pesticides at issue are Eagle 20EW and Avid. Neither is labeled for marijuana use, but that’s not surprising. No pesticide is labeled for marijuana use because the plant is still illegal under federal law.

The Colorado Department of Agriculture developed an 18-page list of pesticides that could be used...

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