Halloween is tomorrow, which means that you've no doubt heard by now that marijuana-infused candies and cookies, referred to in the industry as "edibles," will wind up in your kids' Halloween candy, especially if you live in a state where pot is legal. Don't believe it, though: It's an urban legend with no basis in fact.
This canard pops up every year around this time: That stoners, thinking it's funny, will sneak edibles into kids' Halloween candy. You may have read about it on Facebook; you may have gotten a forwarded email from your aunt in Iowa who forwards everything; you may have even read a dire warning about it from your local police department.
In fact, at least one police department has already forwarded such a dire warning. New Jersey radio station WKXW reported just last week poison control experts and cops are warning parents to be on the lookout for pot-laced edibles in their kids' Halloween candy.
"This Halloween, parents should be vigilant so that their little trick-or-treaters can avoid edible marijuana that resembles candy, health officials say."
First, giving an unsuspecting child (or an adult, for that matter) candy laced with a psychoactive drug is an act of assault in just about any jurisdiction. And while pot-smokers are, by the very definition, lawbreakers (since marijuana is illegal at the federal level), that doesn't mean that users go about poisoning strangers' children. To draw that conclusion is a logical leap, to put it mildly.
A secondly, that stuff is expensive. A single dose can run you about $4, which means that a stoner who wanted to prank 25 kids would spend at least $100 doing so. It's not going to happen.
Evan Nison, executive director of the New Jersey chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), tells cannabis advocacy magazine Leafy the whole thing is a shameless and baseless scare tactic.
"Cannabis consumers are not looking to dose children with cannabis... This is just something that some police officers sometimes say every year, never really comes to fruition."
To that end, parents should, of course, follow the same precautions, pot edibles or not, when it comes to Halloween candy. That means checking your kids' Halloween candy thoroughly, making sure that nothing homemade appears in there, nor anything that isn't pre-wrapped from the manufacturer. If you see something that looks like it's been tampered with, or it was homemade, throw it out. And specifically, if it smells terrible (THC-infused candy does not, by any stretch of the imagination, smell good), or has a pot leaf or something similar on the packaging, or appears to be a play on the name of a manufacturer (Hashey's instead of Hershey's, for example), there's a good chance that there's pot in it, and you should throw it out.