PORTLAND, Maine — Businesses in Maine offering edible marijuana gummies, beverages, chocolates and baked goods are hoping to grab a growing share of the market, though some worry about the appeal of edible products to children.
Since recreational use marijuana was launched in October, the smokable flower has represented 65 percent of the $13 million in sales, the Portland Press Herald reported on Sunday.
What the Maine Office of Marijuana Policy calls infused products represent 14 percent of sales, though in March they counted for 16 percent, the newspaper reported.
The state limits the THC content of any edible product to 10 milligrams per serving and 100 milligrams per package, and tests products before they hit the shelves.
Edible marijuana products are legal for adults only in Maine, and the state prohibits the use of animals, people or fruit on any packaging.
If children do eat edible products, they are more likely to experience severe symptoms or require hospitalization. Symptoms could include difficulty waking up, breathing or sitting up, the newspaper reported.
Doctors like Stephen Meister, a pediatrician at MaineGeneral Health and former president of the Maine chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, advocate for requirements that medical marijuana be stored in child-proof containers.
“Edible products such as brownies, cookies, gummies and other confections have existed within the unregulated market for decades,” said David Heidrich, a spokesperson for the marijuana policy office. “One of the goals of legalization is to diminish the unregulated, untested illicit market.”