Pubdate: Mon, 17 Jul 2017
Source: Metro (Edmonton, CN AB)
Copyright: 2017 Metro Canada
Author: Kevin Maimann
Page: 4


Alberta police are sounding the alarm about a trending drug that one
user says is crucial to her well being.

St. Albert RCMP announced last Thursday they had seized 49 grams of
the highly concentrated marijuana derivative "shatter" from a home in
Fleetwood Crescent, where they also seized more than 100 grams of marijuana.

They arrested two men during the seizure, made on April 21 following
an extensive investigation.

"As shatter is so highly concentrated, it is important that residents
recognize it and be educated about its risks so everyone can be a part
of keeping our community safe," RCMP said in a press release.

Mounties describe shatter as a "highly potent" marijuana derivative
that is hard and toffee-like in appearance.

While marijuana generally has a THC level of 12-15 per cent, shatter
can have levels of the psychoactive ingredient up to 90 per cent, RCMP

Edmonton Police Service drug expert Det. Guy Pilon said shatter
started showing up about three years ago in Edmonton and police have
been seeing more of it this year.

He said police have concerns about the making of the drug, in which
butane is often used to extract the THC from marijuana plant leftovers
- - a process also called "dabbing" - which can cause explosions.

"We have concerns with the potency, and we have concerns with people
trying to make it in their homes, because it tends to be explosive,"
Pilon said.

But one Edmonton woman said shatter has been crucial in her recovery
from cancer.

Donna Mackenzie, president of the United Cannabis Coalition, had
cancer of the esophagus in 2012 and went through chemotherapy,
radiation treatment and surgery to remove her throat and most of her

"It wasn't until I found shatter and the concentrates that I was able
to eat again, after all the stuff that the cancer caused," Mackenzie
told Metro.

She said the high concentration of THC is exactly what has helped her
overcome nausea and loss of appetite.

"It's been a year and a half, and I've gone from 99 pounds to 160
pounds. It's been amazing, the difference. And I'm out and I'm active
and I'm living again," she said. "It's really exciting, actually. I
highly recommend it."

Mackenzie has a medical cannabis card to purchase from licensed
producers, but they don't sell shatter.

It was her son, an employee at a Victoria, B.C. dispensary, who first
suggested she tried it. Now, she has travel back and forth to
dispensaries in Victoria because she doesn't want to buy it on the
street in Edmonton.
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