California’s Track and Trace Program Gets a Rocky Start
Much like the windfall the state was expecting from legal cannabis sales, California’s track and trace program isn’t exactly working out as planned.
Leafly reports that just nine out of the state’s 627 licensed dispensaries are utilizing the $60 million data entry system established by the state. Among the more than 1,000 manufacturing companies permitted to operate in California, just 93 were using the system. For growers, participation is hovering around 7%.
As CalMarijuanaPolicy wrote back in September, the track and trace program, also known as seed-to-sale, promises tight monitoring of every plant grown and sold in the licensed cannabis industry. Its aim is to clamp down on the black market and prevent the flow of cannabis to other states. But license holders weren’t ready for the tech-heavy system, which is why so many are failing to get on board. That’s problematic to say the least.
With paper records, regulators are relying on an honor system, said Patrick Vo, CEO of BioTrackTHC, which provides seed-to-sale cannabis tracking in eight states, including New York and Illinois.
Without a digital crumb trail in place, “there are so many areas where things can go wrong,” Vo said. “Things can be intentionally altered.”
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