Dabbing THC Levels

Dear Florida Coalition Members:

A few months ago I sent you a couple articles referencing explosions that happened as a result of separating the psychoactive components of marijuana from the plant material (called dabbing) by using butane extraction.  This is becoming increasingly more popular as a not only a new high but a way to add cannabis to edible products. Attached you will some recent materials on dabbing.  Most interesting is the coverage by High Times (the first attachment). 
Clearly the extraction method using butane is dangerous but also concerning in the THC potency levels.  We often talk about today’s marijuana not being the same as what was smoked in the 60’s-70’s but let me give you a little more information on what that means and how “hippie-era” marijuana and today’s marijuana compare to the potency levels we are seeing with dabbing. 

Dr. Mahmoud El Sohley runs the Marijuana Project at the National Center for Natural Products Research, School of Pharmacy, University of Mississippi. They track the potency levels of seized marijuana across the US. Below you will see the potency levels according to his research:

1975 – average rate of THC was .74%
1978 – 1.37%
1988 – 3.39%
1993 – 3.4%
1998 – 4.43%
2008 – 8.8%
2009 – average rate was over 10% with some samples exceeding 30%
2012 - 13.7% (per phone conversation with Ed Moses)

 Dr. El Sohley predicts the 2019 average rates to reach 15%.  I think we may be closer to that already. Below is a list of the top marijuana strains that were entered in the 2012 Cannabis Cup (yes this is a real thing…) as you can see from the potency level below the lowest stain way around 19% and the highest was close to 25% (that a huge difference in the .74% we saw in 1975!!!!).

·         Head Cheese – 24.79%
·         Matt’s OG – 24.16%
·         Super Lemon Haze – 22.64%
·         Larry OG – 21.31%
·         Boost – 20.73%
·         Strawberry Cough from Kushman Veganics – 20.07%
·         Dawg’s Waltz – 19.72%
·         Master Yoda – 22.4%
·         Tahoe OG Kuch – 22%
·         Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies – 21.2%
·         XJ-13/Cracker Jack – 20.50%
·         Blackberry - 20.27%
·         Cactus – 20.15%
·         Cobra – 20.12%
·         SFV OG Kush – 23%
·         Rug Burn OG – 22.1%
·         DarkStar – 22%
·         Dog – 21.7%
·         Sour Amnesia – 21.5%
·         Kosher Kush – 21%
·         Yogi Diesel – 21.7%

Now enters dabbing. As referenced in the above articles, dabbing results in THC potency levels of 40% or higher. 
Most of the research we reference today on the harms and impacts of marijuana is referencing the lower potency marijuana.  Few if any would have been done using the 20% THC marijuana being used under the guise of medicine. Nothing has been done yet on dabbing and 40% plus levels of THC. The potential impacts to the developing brain are worrisome.  

Amy Ronshausen
Congressional & Legislative Affairs Director
Save Our Society From Drugs