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Debate on recreational marijuana in Hawaii could hinge on regulation of medical cannabis

By Daryl Huff

Published: Feb. 6, 2023 at 6:02 PM HST|Updated: Feb. 6, 2023 at 6:03 PM HST

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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii health and law enforcement authorities are having a hard time keeping up with the rapidly growing and changing cannabis marketplace.

That could end up creating resistance to legalizing recreational use of marijuana, unless the state Health Department can bring other aspects of the cannabis industry under control.

The proliferation of edible candy-like products that include Delta 8 THC extracted from hemp has happened without any state law or regulation to protect consumers.

The development of the edibles industry, as well as the growth of medical cannabis outside of regulated dispensaries is challenging the state while some lawmakers feel getting control of those aspects is a prerequisite to legal recreational pot.