This won’t be deployed in time to effect the current outbreak of serious lung disease – and we’re not sure exactly that pesticides are directly implicated in that, but they are being discussed as a possible factor – but it’s an (arguably) welcome development 1) for its (stated) intent, and 2) also because the federal government is actually starting to act somewhat rational, that is, as if it cares about the well-being and safety of the large segment of the population who are cannabis consumers….
…by contrast, as late as the 1980s, the government was using planes to spray Paraquat – a potent herbicide – on cannabis fields in Mexico and the US, knowing that Americans would still end up consuming whatever remained of the crop. (See: https://thoughtcatalog.com/jeremy-lond…/2018/…/paraquat-pot/ )
“A federal agency is providing a quarter of a million dollars in funding to a biotech startup that’s developing technology to remove dangerous pesticides from a variety of crops, including marijuana.
The National Science Foundation announced the $250,000 two-year grant to Brooklyn Bioscience last month. The money will go toward research into the company’s efforts to engineer an enzyme able to break down organophosphates (OPs), which are pesticides to particularly hazardous to people and the environment.
‘The product is of particular interest to cannabis farmers, because OPs, when vaporized and inhaled, are exponentially more toxic than when ingested by mouth,’ according a a press release from New York University, where one of Brooklyn Bioscience’s principals is a professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering. ‘[I]n states such as California and Colorado, which are introducing strict regulations governing the cultivation of cannabis, a much lower level of OPs is allowed than that considered acceptable in fruits and vegetables.’
While OPs are effective at increasing crop yields, they’re hydrophobic, or resistant to water, making them difficult to wash away.
The company said it’s able to mitigate the risks associated with OPs with an engineered enzyme called phosphotriesterase. According to them, the enzyme ‘provides a low-cost, efficient, and environmentally friendly solution for breaking down dangerous OPs into relatively benign products that can be more easily removed with water’.”
This sounds hopeful, or means to. Of course some of you (and we) are asking, wouldn’t organic methods of cultivation mitigate the need for this remedy, i.e., if we eliminate step one (spraying with organopesticides) than step two won’t be needed anyway… READ MORE HERE