In a bid to safeguard children from harmful hemp products, Florida authorities recently completed “Operation Kandy Krush,” a comprehensive effort to eradicate edible hemp items that resembled popular candies.
Operation Kandy Krush: Operation Kandy Krush was an extensive hemp inspection sweep conducted by Florida officials. Its mission was to identify and eliminate hemp products specifically designed to appeal to children due to their likeness to widely recognized branded candies, including Air Heads, Skittles, Trolli gummy candies, Jolly Ranchers, Sour Patch Kids, and Life Savers. During this operation, nearly 70,000 packages of such edibles were uncovered, a shocking revelation that posed potential dangers to young consumers.
Legislative Measure: In response to this alarming trend, Florida officials passed a measure during the 2023 legislative session to outlaw these types of hemp products. The bill clearly defined the term “attractive to children” as products manufactured in the shape of humans, cartoons, or animals, or products resembling existing candy brands that could be mistaken for the actual branded candies, particularly by children. Furthermore, hemp products containing any color additives fell under the scope of this prohibition.
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture’s Statement: Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Wilton Simpson addressed the issue promptly, emphasizing that the state is committed to keeping illegal and unsafe hemp products away from the public, especially children. He stressed that diligent enforcement of the law is necessary to ensure the safety and well-being of communities.
Sweep and Inspection: “Operation Kandy Krush” encompassed thorough inspections of over 475 food establishments across 37 counties in Florida. The comprehensive sweep aimed to identify businesses involved in the sale or distribution of these illicit hemp products and remove them from circulation.
Enforcing the Law: Under the new law, consumers must be 21 years or older to purchase hemp products containing THC. Additionally, such products must be packaged in child-safe containers, and ingestible hemp items are required to meet the same health and safety standards as other food products.
With “Operation Kandy Krush,” Florida authorities have taken a significant step in protecting children from the potential risks associated with hemp products designed to appeal to them. By outlawing these items and enforcing strict regulations, the state is reaffirming its commitment to responsible cannabis use and consumer safety. As the cannabis industry evolves, continuous efforts to safeguard the well-being of consumers, especially minors, remain of utmost importance.
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