SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- It's not every day that a TV station's general manager has to sign an expense report for $600 in pot, but this is California, and this is 2014, and this is a serious consumer story.
KPIX 5 reporter Mike Sugerman, who has a medicinal marijuana card, was concerned that the exploding industry is under-regulated, and wanted to test the potency of the medicines that can be purchased, especially the medicinal marijuana that is meant to be ingested, including candy.
"There's no regulation because the Feds consider it illegal," Sugerman explained. "The FDA can't get involved."
He purchased different kinds of items at random at 12 locations in San Francisco and Oakland.
Sugerman said in testing for the upcoming story, a laboratory found that, "...labels on packages had nothing to do with what was in them. One candy was 1 percent of what it claimed!" And other products contained other chemicals that were not supposed to be there.
Station management encouraged the consumer report, even if it raises eyebrows when the finance department reviews the newsroom expenses.
Sugerman said, "They [the bosses] actually were cool with it. It turned out to be a great story and I think one that will really resonate in the community. We're flying blind here. And it's medicine."
The big question several of Sugerman's colleagues asked was what happened to the $600 in marijuana after the testing. Sugerman confirms, "The laboratory kept everything."
To see what the tests revealed about the unregulated medicine, watch at 11 p.m. Pacific on KPIX 5 Monday, November 17th, on television, or streaming online at http://kpix.com/live
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