Cannabis users are experimenting with different marijuana consumption methods as well as a variety of cannabis products as the cannabis community grows. From CBD flowers, oil, tinctures, topicals, etc to vape carts/ vape pens.
Vaping is a relatively new smoking strategy that gained popularity in recent years after the introduction of e-cigarettes in the 2000s. As more people attempt vaping, more research is being done to see how it affects users after some people got ill and a number of people died from vaping fake vape carts.
It’s very important to make sure you know what to look for when purchasing your next cartridge to avoid being harmed by faulty cartridges. Here are some tips that may help you.
Check the License
Any cartridge not purchased from a licensed dispensary has a high possibility of being faulty or contaminated, posing a serious health risk. When heated and combined with other chemicals, even seemingly harmless additions might have disastrous repercussions.
Products sold by licensed dispensaries have all been legally tested to ensure your safety. A license number is needed by law on the packaging of THC cartridges. The product is legal, tested, and safe to use because of this license number. Any product that does not have this distinct feature should not be used and should be discarded right away. A product that does not have a license number is one that does not belong in the legal market. Toss a cartridge if it lacks this quality assurance.
Valid THC goods must also publish their lab findings online for the purpose of proving their validity. If your product does not provide information about its lab results, it is likely to be a fake.
Check the packaging
While purchasing at regulated markets is essential, you can also inspect the packaging to determine if anything appears to be suspicious.
All products in the regulated California market should have the following information on their labels:
- date of manufacture
- a date for packing
- A batch number
- Lot number
Check the Lab results
If the brand you’re buying from is licensed, you can ask your budtender to give you a certificate of analysis (COA) which will contain the lab test results that the brand has provided retailers with. And while some illicit market brands might fake the lab results, you could always check with the lab to find out if the results are real.
You should also check for any red flags on the results. Are the THC percentages on the test results particularly low? Are they exceptionally high with THC contents as high as 99.9%? Cannabis industry professionals say that vape cartridges below 60% are likely mixed with other materials.
Check the ingredients
Diluents including propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin, and medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) oil are found in many vape tanks.
These oils are occasionally added to give cannabis extracts a more liquid consistency so they can be vaped more readily, or simply to reduce the price of the product by using cheaper ingredients. These cutting agents are currently being investigated as a possible cause of the unexpected outbreak of vaping-related ailments, notably a novel thickening called Vitamin E acetate (also known as tocopheryl-acetate).
If the cartridge contains less than 60% THC, this is another indicator of its composition. Any packet containing less than 60% THC is most likely loaded with other toxic substances, making the cartridge dangerous and counterfeit. Packages with an unusually high amount of THC, on the other hand, are fake cartridges and should be treated as such.
Signs that your THC Vape Cart is Fake
Many times, the clues that aid in the detection of a counterfeit cartridge are derived only from experience and common sense. Trust your gut feelings. It's always better to be safe than sorry if something doesn't look or feel right.
There are a few more red signals that will help you tell the difference between a genuine THC cartridge and a fake:
Throw it away if you can detect a flavor. Any THC cartridge with a burnt flavor, a metallic aftertaste, or that makes you cringe is a fake. These "off-flavors" should not be present and could suggest the presence of pollutants or other additives that cause a negative reaction when heated to vapor.
A cartridge containing Polyethylene glycol, Propylene glycol, or Vegetable glycerin, in addition to Vitamin E Acetate, could be exceedingly harmful to your health. These cutting agents are FDA-approved for ingestion but not for inhalation.
These chemicals, along with Vitamin E Acetate, have regularly been among the compounds discovered in the black market and counterfeit cartridges, indicating that they should be avoided.
Verify that the product's lab results include pesticide and heavy metal testing. Fake cartridges, which are commonly packed with pesticides or heavy metals, can cause serious and occasionally life-threatening long-term health problems. Your cartridge is not safe to use if the lab results do not include pesticide testing.
You may or may not be able to visit legal cannabis stores, depending on the rules in your country. While cannabis industry experts recommend purchasing cannabis from the legal market and authorized shops due to the state's stringent testing requirements, this isn't always doable.
To be safe, make sure you're purchasing a high-quality product from a respected cannabis company, double-check the labeling and THC concentration, and pay a fair amount. You'll be sure your product is free of pesticides, heavy metals, and other toxins this way.