While most top shelf cannabis is often defined as having 20 percent or more delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a bill was filed in Florida that would limit medical cannabis to 10 percent THC.
On February 26, Republican Representative Spencer Roach filed House Bill 1455 which would restrict medical cannabis prescriptions to low-THC cannabis, and create several other restrictions and regulations. The legislation, as it is currently written, would limit smokable cannabis to 10 percent THC, edibles to 15 percent, and all other products would be limited to 60 percent.
“This will be crippling for the medical marijuana industry in Florida,” Ben Pollara, executive director of Florida For Care told Florida Politics. “The biggest impact is going to be driving the prices up or driving the medical efficacy down, or both.”
It’s quite easy to find smokable flower in many states with 30 percent or more THC, while extracts can reach 80-90 percent THC. Even in vape pens, Pollara explained, additives would have to be combined to lower THC levels to 60 percent—a ridiculous notion for many vape sellers.
Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, who also served as a cannabis industry lobbyist, slammed Roach’s bill as “outrageous,” adding that it would impose a new tax on sick and suffering patients in the state.
Senator Ray Rodrigues carried the original bill with THC caps that passed in the House in 2019. “It was literally days after newly elected Governor Ron DeSantis and the legislature, staring down the barrel of near certain loss at the Florida Supreme Court, finally relented and passed a bill allowing smoke—only days later—that Rodrigues filed his first pass at THC caps in smokable marijuana sold at MMTCs in Florida,” Pollara said.
Senator Ana Maria Rodriguez also recently filed a bill, Senate Bill 1568, that addresses medical cannabis testing, but does not currently include THC caps on smokable cannabis. The THC limits would make reasonable profits almost impossible for any cannabis producer, and leave patients with poor medicine.