Police in the Lake District have warned parents to beware – after finding schoolchildren eating sweets infused with illegal cannabis which are said to be stronger than a joint.
Cumbria Police issued a warning after dealing with ‘multiple’ reports of children intoxicated by the ‘dangerous and illegal’ Class-B sweets.
Officers seized a number of packets bound for Windermere and arrested a man on suspicion of possession of a controlled drug with intent to supply.
Parents have been warned about children eating cannabis infused sweets that are designed to look like real children’s sweets but have a ‘high’ THC content. Pictured: ‘Nerd Rope Bites’, ‘Stoner Patch’ and ‘Stoney Patch’ sweets which are all illegal in the UK
They explained: ‘Officers have been dealing with multiple incidents relating to young people being intoxicated from cannabis infused sweets.
‘The wrappers essentially look like any sweet packet so parents please be aware.
‘Any of these sweets with a genuinely high THC content are both dangerous and illegal.
‘THC is the main psychoactive compound found in cannabis
‘Officers have already made a number of large seizures one of which was bound for Windermere.
‘The local male involved has been released under police investigation on suspicion of possession of a controlled drug with intent to supply.’
Cumbria Police issued the warning after seizing a packet bound for Windermere in the Lake District and arrested a man on suspicion of possession of a controlled drug with intent to supply. Pictured: Lake Windermere
The ‘Stoner Patch’ or ‘Stoney Patch’ sweets involved contain derivatives of cannabis and are legal in most of the US – but not the UK.
The sweets are often advertised online for sale, mainly from US-based retailers, boasting of containing 500mg of THC, and 0.1mg of CBD.
An average joint is reported to contain about 12mg of THC according to scientific studies.
In America, some states have legalised marijuana while others allow it for medicinal use only.
THC is the psychoactive substance that recreational users use to get ‘high’.. CBD is not illegal as it does not get you high.
CBD oil can therefore be extracted from industrial hemp and sold in the UK to help people ease inflammation, for pain relief and reducing anxiety.
But the Home Office says only products with a maximum THC content of less than 0.2 per cent are legal.
Sweet but dangerous
Cannabis infused sweets have become the latest craze among teenagers with authorities warning parents that they pose a serious danger because of their strength and if consumed to excess.
Nerds Rope bites, the ‘super potent’ edibles which supposedly contain 600mg of THC, the active ingredient in cannabis
Known as ‘edibles’ they are freely available on the internet for around £20 for a packet of 30.
But street dealers are selling individual sweets for as little as £1 each, prompting a surge in popularity amongst school pupils, particularly in London and other urban areas.
The ‘edibles’ are attractively packaged in a way designed to appeal to young people while making it difficult to distinguish them from regular sweets.
One London schoolgirl told MailOnline: ‘All the kids are taking them, during school time and outside of it. They’re easy to get hold of and they’re very cheap, especially if you get them off the dealers. If you buy them on the internet, they’re delivered to your house.’
The ‘sweets’ come in a variety of different strengths of THC – the active component in cannabis, ranging from 75mg to a mind-bending 300mg, which can cause vomiting and other side effects.
Concerns have been raised however, that not all the packaging contains adequate information as to their strength and simply state ‘infused with cannabis.’
Some of the ‘sweets’ market themselves as a health treatment with one British website claiming: ‘Eating marijuana works better for LONG LASTING pain relief muscle spasms and similar conditions.’
Amongst the ‘edibles’ it lists are: Gummie Bears; Cherry Candy; Watermelon Rings and Peach Rings. THC laced fruit syrup is also available. All of it comes in stylised, colourful packaging.
While it is illegal to sell items containing THC in the UK for recreational purposes, it is legal for medical reasons, providing a dangerous loophole which many youngsters and dealers are exploiting.
Earlier this year, police warned children against eating watermelon-flavour sweets laced with cannabis.
They warned that the cartoon-covered Stoner Patch packets did not contain details about how strong the ‘sweets’ are and whether or not they are legal.
North Yorkshire PC Lauren Green said: ‘We want to make parents and carers aware that we have seen a rise in young people being in possession of drug-infused sweets known as ‘edibles’.
‘They can look very similar to well-known sweets such as Haribo, Smarties and chocolate bars. Edibles can be laced with illegal drugs such as cannabis and MDMA.
‘Unregulated sweets like these are dangerous as we don’t know what levels of drugs they contain.’