Schools across Northern Ireland have written to parents after receiving a warning letter from The Department of Education about products containing cannabis oil being disguised as sweets.
The Public Health Agency alert confirmed that a young child assessed in hospital had “inadvertently consumed cannabis after finding what they believed to be a packet of sweets on the ground”. On closer inspection the sweet packet is labelled as containing THC, to all other purposes they look like a common brand of sweets which are marketed for children.
As children often have a smaller body mass than adults the effects may be more profound and can include:
- Loss of coordination
- Lethargy, collapse or loss of consciousness
There have been a few seizures of similar products (see image for example) – labelled ‘Medicated Nerds Ropes, 400 mg THC per rope’ and ‘Medicated Nerdz Rope Bites, 600 mg THC’. Analysis has confirmed the presence of THC.
The sweet edibles are available in a variety of flavours, and sold in branded packaging- SXEDIBLES. Other branded packaging from SXEDIBLES, ‘millionz bites, 600 mg THC’- also confirmed to contain THC, with the product available in multiple flavours. Other products have names which often have a slight variation of a familiar sweet product e.g. have received ‘Harribo Fruitilicious’- wrapped jelly like sweets or Calibo Xtra Strong’.
The Department have asked schools to please make staff and parents aware of the information about seized products and their photographs.
In a statement to BBC News Ferrara, which makes Nerds sweets, said companies that infuse its products with THC “infringes” its trademark and “creates a genuine consumer safety risk”.
It explained that Ferrara “is in no way associated with these deceptive products, and want to reassure consumers that Nerds products found at major retailers are safe to consume. We continue to pursue various means to limit, and eliminate, these products, including cooperating with law enforcement agencies, investigating dispensaries and other retail outlets selling these infringing products, and pursuing legal action, where and when necessary, to protect consumers.”
If anyone has any further information relating to these incidents or similar circumstances they should contact the PSNI and forward any information to DAMIS@hscni.net.