AK: Report Finds Marijuana Testing Results Differ At Labs

Photo Credit: Leah Thompson

Marijuana testing facilities in Alaska do not produce the same results when testing the strength and potency of the same marijuana products, according to a state report.

The state Environmental Health Laboratory studied the testing by sending a series of marijuana items for the facilities to examine, KTUU-TV reported Monday.

The testing by the facilities yielded different results for potency although their methodologies for conducting the examinations were similar, according to the report prepared for the state Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office.

Two marijuana testing labs remain in the state following the closure of a third in April, leaving Alaska growers with limited options to comply with the state-mandated testing.

The two labs tested a muffin, cookie crumbs, capsules and dried flowers containing marijuana, according to the report made public last week. The labs assigned the items a strength level per milligram.

For the muffin, one lab measured a potency of more than double the results of the other lab, according to the report.

“Differently stated, this review could not determine which set of lab results best represents the true potency content of the matrices submitted by AMCO because the level of accuracy assessment is insufficient at both laboratories,” the report stated.

The report recommended that the state require the labs to “develop quality assurance activities to characterize the accuracy, precision, and representativeness of all reported data.”

“Erika McConnell, director of the Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office, said the recommendations made in the report are encouraging because corrections to the testing process would “give consumers confidence in the system.”