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Cannabis Product Recall in California Due to Hazardous Pesticide Contamination

California’s cannabis industry has been making headlines lately, and not for the reasons you’d hope. In the wake of a Los Angeles Times report exposing pesticide contamination in the state’s cannabis products, the Department of Cannabis Control (DCC) issued a mandatory recall on July 2nd. This recall targets multiple vape cartridges manufactured by Shield Management Group, LLC, under the popular West Coast Cure (WCC) brand.

Pesticide Contamination DCC Product Recall

The recall follows an investigative report by the Los Angeles Times written in conjunction with Weed Week’s that uncovered the use of dangerous, sometimes banned, pesticides in California’s legal cannabis supply. The DCC issued a mandatory recall on July 2, 2024, for several WCC products found to contain chlorfenapyr, a Category I pesticide with highly acute toxicity levels.

Chlorfenapyr is a potent pesticide not registered for food use in California and banned for use in cannabis cultivation. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), chlorfenapyr intoxication can lead to severe symptoms like high fever, muscle breakdown, and neurological issues, which can worsen until death. Clearly, its presence in consumer products is a serious concern.

The Affected Products

The recall includes the following WCC products:


  • SLYMER Vape Cartridge (Batch No.: VRES234436 | UID No.: 1A4060300009222000011136)

WEST COAST CURE CUREpen Vape Cartridge

  • Lucky Charmz (Batch No.: VPPL234429 | UID No.: 1A4060300009222000011129)

CUREpen PREMIUM THC OIL Vape Cartridge

  • Lemon Cooler (Batch No.: VPPL234379 | UID No.: 1A4060300009222000010379)
  • Birthday Cake (Batch No.: VPPL234382 | UID No.: 1A4060300009222000010382)
  • Watermelon Sorbet (Batch No.: VPPL234381 | UID No.: 1A4060300009222000010381)

If you have any of these products, check the package for the UID and batch number. If they match, dispose of the product or return it to the retailer for proper disposal.

Consumers who have purchased these products are urged to stop using them immediately. If you’re experiencing symptoms or any adverse reactions, contact your physician right away.

The recall underscores the importance of rigorous testing and quality control in the cannabis industry. With the increasing legalization and normalization of cannabis products, ensuring consumer safety is paramount. The presence of hazardous pesticides not only poses health risks but also undermines consumer trust in the industry.

West Coast Cure Response

In response to the recall, WCC issued a press release emphasizing their commitment to safety and quality. They pointed out their reliance on state-licensed laboratories for compliance tests and highlighted the nearly $1 million investment in testing during 2023 alone.

WCC also criticized the lack of standardized procedures among testing labs, pointing out that the state has established proficiency standards that don’t align with compliance tests. This discrepancy, they argue, contributes to inconsistent results and consumer confusion.

“At the end of the day, West Coast Cure is not a testing laboratory, nor are we permitted to be one by California regulations,” WCC press release noted.

Below are Instagram videos from @jcures Jerett Wasserman, Co-Founder of WCC, addressing recall.

In addition to the recall, plaintiffs have filed a class action lawsuit against Shield Management Group, the legal business name for WCC. The lawsuit claims that multiple WCC products contained unlawful contaminants and failed to meet safety standards. This legal battle adds another layer of complexity to the ongoing controversy.

Two California cannabis testing labs, Infinite Chemical Analysis Labs and Anresco Laboratories, have also filed a federal lawsuit against 13 other labs, accusing them of conspiring to inflate THC potency levels or approve cannabis products that failed contaminant testing.

The recall and ensuing lawsuits have ignited demands for better oversight and standardized testing procedures to address lab shopping, THC potency inflation, and pesticide contamination in California’s cannabis industry.

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