The cannabis industry in Canada is suffering from product recalls due to harmful mold and mislabeling issues.
Beginning in September 2023, thousands of cannabis products have been recalled in Canada from various licensed producers due to numerous issues such as mislabeling on packages and harmful mold (1). Port Elgin, Ontario is the area suffering from the most recent recall. The licensed producer Coulson Cannabis had to issue a recall this month due to microbial contamination.
Canada’s government has a portal for recalls and safety alerts where notices can be posted and one was published that mentioned “the affected products might contain mold that could pose a risk of gastrointestinal symptoms and infections for consumers with compromised immune systems,” (1).
It is estimated that 660 units of product that were recalled were sold via authorized retailers located in Ontario from September 14 – October 3, 2023.
Health Canada has mentioned that Coulson Cannabis did receive one complaint specific to the recalled batch. Luckily, no adverse health reactions have been reported.
One of the most common reasons of cannabis recalls has been due to labeling errors. In the beginning of October, Emblem Cannabis Corp., which is a division of Aleafia Health based in Toronto, needed to recall a batch of cannabis extract that was sold through authorized retailers (1). The recall occurred after a decision from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice had agreed on approving a plan that allowed Red White & Bloom, a multistate operator (MSO), to acquire Aleafia. This deal was approved in August 2023.
Emblem Cannabis Corp. mentioned that the products that were affected had been sold between May 12 – October 3, 2023. The recall was caused from mislabeling and the products contained the incorrect cannabinoid values. An example of when this can occur is when the amount on the label, such as for the cannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD), is lower than the true value in the product.
Whenever there is a cannabis product recall, Health Canada recommends consumers reaching out to their retailers where the products were obtained.