Midweek Marijuana Law Review: Marijuana Concentrates in Vermont

What does Act 86, Vermont’s marijuana bill passed back in January, say about marijuana concentrates?

Disclaimer: This is not legal advice. I am not a lawyer. This piece is purely for informational purposes regarding Act 86, a Vermont bill that pertains only to Vermont and has no bearing on federal law.

But first,

What are marijuana concentrates?

Generally speaking, there are many substances that fall under the marijuana concentrate umbrella like hash, tinctures (marijuana dissolved in alcohol) and butane honey oil. Essentially they are all different versions of the same thing: the molecules in marijuana responsible for intoxication separated from the plant matter and purified into a substance that can be much more powerful than regular marijuana.

BHO
A sample of Butane Honey Oil.

What does Act 86 say about marijuana concentrates?

Concentrates are addressed a few times in Act 86. The first time was the possession of hash, which we looked at here. Now we’ll look at marijuana concentrates derived through hydrocarbon extraction like butane honey oil.

4230h. Chemical Extraction Via Butane or Hexane Prohibited

(a) No person shall manufacture concentrated marijuana by chemical extraction or chemical synthesis using butane or hexane unless authorized as a dispensary pursuant to a registration issued by the Department of Public Safety pursuant to chapter 86 of this title.

Page. 16

Hydrocarbons, like butane and hexane, have been used for almost 50 years in food production. Canola and corn oil for example. So why is personally manufacturing marijuana “oil” concentrate prohibited in Vermont?  

Safety is the biggest reason. Butane and hexane are highly flammable and unpredictable in an uncontrolled environment. To extract the intoxicating molecules from marijuana, one uses liquid butane or hexane. In a home setting, butane and hexane quickly turn into gas that is heavier than air. It only takes one spark to set off a tragic accident.

Check out this news report out of California on the dangers of making concentrates yourself:

 

Due to these concerns, Vermont has limited production to “authorized dispensar[ies] pursuant to a registration issued by the Department of Public Safety.”

Penalties.

Just like with unlawful possession, cultivation, and consumption, manufacturing your own marijuana concentrates could spell trouble. The excerpt on chemical extraction continues to read:

4230h. Chemical Extraction Via Butane or Hexane Prohibited

(b) A person who violates subsection (a) of this section shall be imprisoned not more than two years or fined not more than $2,000.00, or both. A person who violates subsection (a) of this section and causes serious bodily injury to another person shall be imprisoned not more than five years or fined not more than $5,000.00, or both.

Page. 16

Come July 1, be safe, protect yourself, and leave chemical extraction to professionals.

To catch up on past Midweek Marijuana Law Reviews click here: 

Week 1: Legal? 

Week 2: What is Marijuana?

Week 3: Personal possession in VT.

Week 4: Personal cultivation in VT.

Week 5: Personal consumption in VT.

 

Written by The Chad

Real name is Thomas Anania. Hi.

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