A grow light shines through the leaves of a cannabis plant at a grow facility in Denver. (Denver Post file)

State recalls Back to the Garden, High Street Growers pot over pesticides

For the fifth time in less than a week state cannabis regulators have issued a health advisory and recall of marijuana over concerns it is contaminated with potentially dangerous pesticides not approved for use on the crop.

Thursday’s order by the Marijuana Enforcement Division involves 446 batches of recreational and medical marijuana grown at a Denver cannabis cultivation facility servicing two pot shops owned by Michelle Tucker — High Street Growers at 330 N. Federal Blvd. and Back to the Garden at 1755 S. Broadway.

The MED did not say how many plants or products are impacted by the recall, but the agency recommended that customers with the contaminated pot return it to the place of purchase.

State officials said the plants had tested positive for two pesticide chemicals, myclobutanil and avermectin bla, neither of which is allowed to be used on commercially grown marijuana in Colorado. But the owner of Back to the Garden and High Street Growers told The Post that while her team had previously used the banned pesticides, their residues are no longer present in the finished, smokable products she sells to customers.

“It’s an incorrect action,” Tucker said late-Thursday. “By the admission of the Department of Agriculture, the people who tested the product, there was nothing found in any of my finished, smokable products sold to the public.”

Tucker said her growers stopped using pesticides containing myclobutanil and other banned chemicals “a year ago” after the city of Denver first stepped up its pesticide enforcement actions, which ultimately pushed the state to publish a list of allowable pest-control chemicals for use on cannabis.

Any residues of the banned chemicals in her current inventory were only found in the fan leaves and stalks, Tucker told The Post. “They’re not in any of the products or flower I’ve sold,” she said.

Denver health officials have independently issued 20 recalls of pot products tainted with unapproved pesticides, but state regulators have only recently stepped up their efforts after Gov. John Hickenlooper in November issued an executive order declaring pesticide-laden marijuana a “public safety risk” and mandating its destruction.

State regulators on Friday issued their first two recalls under Hickenlooper’s order, on a pair of cultivation facilities in Colorado Springs — Dr. Releaf Inc. and High Mountain Medz. A third order, issued Tuesday, recalled plants grown by XG Corp.’s facility in Garden City, just outside of Greeley. The state’s fourth order landed Wednesday, recalling product from Golden pot shop Rocky Mountain Organic Medicine.