Food by VICE

A Colorado Politician Wants to Outlaw Cannabis Gummy Bears

Due to a recent surge of children accidentally consuming marijuana edibles and winding up in the hospital, Colorado State Representative Dan Pabon wants to do away with weed-infused gummies.

by Alex Swerdloff
Apr 12 2016, 6:00pm

With the legalization of marijuana for recreational use in 2014, the great state of Colorado has seen its share of ingenious advancements. Many of these have to do with edibles, which now make up much of the billion-dollar weed industry there. Some recreational stores in Colorado are saying that edibles comprise a majority of their sales.

But good news often comes with a dose of bad news, and when it comes to edibles the bad news is that kids are getting into it. Hospitals in Colorado have seen a surge in accidental consumption among 3-to 7-year-olds. At least three deaths in Colorado were linked to edibles last year, though it basically impossible to fatally overdose on cannabis.

READ MORE: Now You'll Finally Know How High You'll Get from That Edible

To address this problem, Colorado State Representative Dan Pabon, a democrat from Denver, is trying to outlaw weed-infused gummies.

"Right now in Colorado, there are no distinguishing characteristics between the gummy bear that contains marijuana and one that does not," Pabon said. The governor of Colorado, John Hickenlooper, supports the proposed legislation: "Back in the day, candy cigarettes desensitized kids to the dangers of tobacco - and today, pot-infused gummy bears send the wrong message to our kids about marijuana." He wants pot-infused stuff not to look like "products kids can find in the candy aisle."

Washington State legalized the sale of marijuana 18 months ago and that state has tightened its rules on edibles. Rick Garza, director of the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis board told Reuters that the new regulations outlawed brightly colored marijuana lollipops and other sweets that could entice kids.

READ MORE: Colorado's Legal Weed Edibles Are High on Sophistication

The resemblance of medicated gummies to non-medicated gummies has led to panic around Halloween, as parents, police, and advocacy organizations gear up to educate the public that there and gummies… and then there are gummies. Although some claim that the "hidden edible" is the new "razor-in-the-apple"—meaning it is a largely baseless scare—it's hard to deny that the danger exists. In fact, some groups in Colorado have called for the ban of a wide-range of edibles.

The newly proposed legislation would not go that far. Its target is gummies—every kid's favorite gelatin- or pectin-based sugar delivery device. And if State Representative Pabon has his way, sugar will be the only drug found in the beloved confection.

Looks like you might want to get your edible gummies while you still can.