As the legalization of marijuana continues to spread, it is providing weights and measures officials with special challenges. The National Conference on Weights and Measures (NCWM) responded by forming a Cannabis Task Group which will develop uniform weights and measures standards for this growing industry. This task group just held its first meeting in conjunction with the NCWM Interim Meeting in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Weights and measures officials pride themselves in providing consumer protection and a level playing field for businesses. They are often described as the invisible third party in every transaction. It is always a special challenge when they are faced with providing these services in a new or previously unregulated market sector. And even more of a challenge when dealing with cannabis.
Some of the questions to be answered are:
- What are the precision requirements for scales used in direct sale?
- What is the prescribed method of sale (weight, volume or count) for the various forms of cannabis?
- Are there special considerations when verifying net contents of packaged goods?
- Will moisture loss be a consideration in verifying net contents of packaged goods?
- Are there any special labeling requirements?
- Are there special safety considerations?
- Are there special considerations for personnel policies for inspectors?
NCWM Chairman James Cassidy, City of Cambridge, MA Weights and Measures Department, formed this task group and is also its chairman. He saw an urgent need to provide guidance materials for regulators and industry as this new market expands so that it may be handled uniformly and professionally from state to state.
“Interest among regulators is strong and we expect full support and participation from the cannabis industry in this effort,” said Cassidy. “Regulated industries have always been an integral element in NCWM’s standards development process. Uniform standards allow them to operate more efficiently and with reduced competition from unfair business practices.”
The National Conference on Weights and Measures is a professional nonprofit association of state and local weights and measures officials, federal agencies, manufacturers, retailers and consumers. NCWM has developed national weights and measures standards since 1905. The organization brings the right interests together to keep pace with innovative advancements in the marketplace.