A San Jose cannabis dispensary was ordered by a Santa Clara County Superior Court judge to pay $50,000 in civil penalties and costs for violating laws related to the safe application of pesticides.
According to the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office, authorities began investigating Relentless Enterprises Inc., a state-licensed retail cannabis dispensary doing business as Theraleaf Relief in San Jose, after a referral from the county Division of Agriculture.
Theraleaf Relief had been cultivating cannabis at its San Jose facility from May to July 2020. During that time, dispensary staff applied a pesticide to cannabis that was not approved for cannabis application.
The District Attorney’s Office said that workers who were not wearing any personal protective equipment were allowed to enter a cannabis growing room that had been treated with the pesticide. Untrained workers were also allowed to prepare and apply pesticides to cannabis without wearing the requires personal protective equipment.
“Retail cannabis dispensaries are part of our community and are required to operate in accordance with the law,” said Deputy District Attorney Christopher Judge. “The citizens of Santa Clara County have an expectation that their cannabis products are produced in a manner that is safe for consumers and dispensary employees.”
Theraleaf Relief agreed to pay the civil costs and penalties in the first-of-its-kind civil suit between the county and a licensed cannabis dispensary. The dispensary also agreed to be bound by a permanent injunction to never improperly apply pesticides again.
Prosecutors said the dispensary cooperated with the investigation and took steps to improve environmental protection and worker safety brought to their attention during the investigation.
Theraleaf Relief was not immediately available for comment on the settlement.
So far, there have been no reports of physical harm to consumers due from the use of pesticides on cannabis by the dispensary.