The Oregon Liquor Control Commission in August fined Curaleaf $130,000 and suspended the company’s license for 23 days over a mix-up between THC and CBD products that sent several people to the hospital in late 2021.
According to the OLCC document, Curaleaf in August 2021 shipped more than 1,500 mislabeled bottles of its “Select CBD Drops Broad Spectrum Hemp CBD Tincture,” resulting in an OLCC recall after complaints that users had unexpectedly become impaired. Though labeled as only containing trace amounts of THC, testing revealed the products to have “significant amounts” of the cannabinoid, ranging from 24.9 milligrams up to 36.6 milligrams. Additionally, the company’s “Select THC Drops” were found to contain only trace amounts of THC while having CBD levels of 30.6 milligrams to 33.4 milligrams, despite labeling to the contrary.
According to the OLCC report, the mix-up was found to be a an “isolated incident” in which a single employee confused the ingredients: “Investigation revealed that during production a batch of Hemp CBD bulk oil had been unintentionally switched with a batch of Marijuana THC bulk oil, resulting in Hemp CBD tinctures being mislabeled and sold as THC tinctures and vice versa.”
The penalty is less than the originally proposed suspension of 70 days and $200,000 fine, but the OLCC noted the “extraordinary cooperation” of Curaleaf during the investigation.
The mix-up sent at least five people to the hospital and resulted in 11 lawsuits, including one for wrongful death of a 78-year-old man who used the products and died two months later. So far, 10 of the suits have been settled.
— Brian Beckley