Warning issued over jelly sweets containing cannabis ahead of Halloween 1 month ago

Warning issued over jelly sweets containing cannabis ahead of Halloween

Parents are urged to be wary.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has warned parents to be careful of the dangers of cannabis jellies.

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Gardaí seized a consignment of the jellies in Dublin on Wednesday and the FSAI has warned the public, especially parents and guardians, to be extremely vigilant to the dangers of inadvertent consumption.

The FSAI said it was issuing the warning in advance of the Halloween festivities next week where small children, teenagers and adults will be celebrating and where there is an increased risk of people, particularly children, unwittingly consuming these types of products. The products are often intentionally packaged to resemble popular brands in order to avoid detection.

Depending on the THC concentration of the product, eating one of these jellies can mean ingesting a level of THC that is "five to ten times higher" than that inhaled when smoking cannabis.

The FSAI said the real concern is that children are not aware of the dangers and if they manage to gain access to a bag of these jellies, they will rarely eat just one and therefore, "overdosing is a very likely outcome".

Six children in Ireland have been hospitalised this year after consuming cannabis jellies.

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Dr Pamela Byrne, Chief Executive at the FSAI described the accidental consumption of edible cannabis products by children as extremely worrying.

“We know adults and/or teenagers are ordering these illegal products from online or other illegal sources for their own personal use," she said.

"However, they often have no understanding of the real health dangers of these products and are careless or reckless in putting young children’s health at risk by allowing them access to these products. The prevalence of these edible products containing THC in communities and schools around the country is a growing cause for concern and parents and guardians should be extra vigilant during festivities such as Halloween where parties will be underway, and the risk of accidental consumption of these products is considerably higher.

“We are working closely with other Government agencies including the Health Service Executive’s Environmental Health Service and the Public Analyst’s Laboratory, Dublin; An Garda Síochana; Revenue’s Customs Service; Forensic Science Ireland; the State Laboratory and; the Food Standards Agency in Northern Ireland to detect and stop the import of these illegal food products into Ireland.

"We welcome any information from the public in the national effort to curb the availability of these illegal products and to protect our children and young people."

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