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Massive marijuana recall causing frustrations, as testing lab stands by results

Michigan's Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) issued a recall on Wednesday, saying products tested by Viridis Labs and Viridis North may have been improperly done
Pharmhouse Wellness
Posted at 5:13 PM, Nov 22, 2021

A massive marijuana recall issued by the Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency is the largest in the state's brief history with legalized recreational pot.

On Wednesday, the MRA issued the recall, saying it affected most cannabis products tested by Viridis Laboratories or Viridis North between August 10 and November 16.

The recall does not include vape cartridges, live resin, distillate, or any other concentrate created via residual solvent extractions.

Products like cannabis flower, pre-rolled joints, and edibles are part of the recall.

The MRA released a list of every dispensary in the state that may be affected by the recall. You can view that full list here, or see which locations in West Michigan were on the list by checking out the interactive map at the bottom of this web article.

FOX 17 visited Pharmhouse Wellness on Wealthy Street Monday to talk about how the recall is impacting them.

“We were fortunate enough, where we only had a handful of items that were recalled, however, they didn't even make the shelves, we had just received them the week of the recall,” said Megan Smith, inventory and social media manager for Pharmhouse, told FOX 17.

"Others weren't so lucky. There are some dispensaries that had to pull so much inventory that they had to close."

Pharmhouse Wellness is one of the only locally owned and operated dispensaries in Michigan.

While they never had any potentially affected products on their store shelves, they do have a procedure in place they would fall back on if a situation like this were to ever happen again, and directly impact their customers.

“If we did have any of those items that were recalled, that we did, in fact, sell to customers or patients," Smith explained.

"Our plan of action would be to go through a list, call each person up individually, explain what happened, ask them if they have any questions, and then offer either an in-store credit or a refund.”

All cannabis products sold in Michigan are required to go through rigorous purity testing. Info on which lab tested each product is available at the dispensary you bought it from.

“If anyone has any questions ever, feel free to call up any dispensary that you purchased your products at. They have to tell you which products were recalled," Smith said.

Founder of Pharmhouse Wellness, Casey Kornoelje, says the consumer shouldn't be worried that the products they are buying are unsafe.

“You shouldn't be scared. I mean, Grand Rapids has a wonderful cannabis program," he said Monday.

Pharmhouse is hosting an event on Wednesday, November 24 from 9:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m., where they are giving out free turkeys to anyone who stops by, while supplies last.

They are giving out 100 turkeys, and no purchase is necessary.

CEO or Viridis, Greg Michaud, sent FOX 17 the following statement regarding their perspective on the current situation:

"At Viridis Laboratories, the health and safety of patients and adult-use cannabis consumers is our top priority. Viridis is the highest accredited cannabis testing facility in the state and sets the standard for accurate, ethical cannabis testing. We pride ourselves on using the safest, most accurate testing methods, and we hold ourselves to the highest standards developed through our founders’ expertise and decades of experience in forensic science and toxicology at the Michigan State Police.

We’ve been informed that some products tested by Viridis are being recalled by the Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA).

While we strongly disagree with this decision and firmly stand by our test results, we are fully cooperating with the MRA and working closely with our customers to minimize interruptions and retest affected products at no cost.

We look forward to continuing to serve our amazing customers using the best, most cutting-edge scientific methods available so we can fulfill our mission of promoting the health and safety of patients and adult-use consumers."

Michigan's Marijuana Regulatory Agency says their investigation into Viridis remains ongoing.

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