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California Lawyers File Their Fourth Lawsuit Against a Cannabis Company For Allegedly Inflating the Potency of Its Products

By Leo Bear-McGuinness

Published: Jan 09, 2023   
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Two Californian lawyers are on a roll when it comes to cannabis company lawsuits.

On January 6, Christin Cho and Simon Franzini of Dovel & Luner, LLP, filed a lawsuit against Four Star Manufacturing, a Los Angeles-based cannabis company. The suit alleges that a brand of pre-rolls made by Four Star contain less THC than advertised.

The lawsuit is the fourth that the two Santa Monica-based lawyers have filed in recent months against a cannabis company.

Four and counting

The lawsuit filed on January 6 tells a familiar story to the previous suits filed by Dovel & Luner, LLP.

It alleges that Four Star incorrectly labeled its “Cannabiotix” pre-roll products. The Cannabiotix Blue Flame OG Pre-roll, for instance, supposedly contained 27.97% THC. Independent lab testing done on behalf of Dovel & Luner revealed, however, that the product’s true THC content was between 21 and 22%.

This difference is substantially outside the 10% margin of error allowed under Californian regulations.

The plaintiff in the suit is said to have purchased a Cannabiotix pre-roll in Los Angeles on February 20, 2022.

“If he had known the truth, he would not have purchased the products, or would have paid less for it,” the lawsuit reads.

The plaintiff is seeking damages, equitable relief, attorney’s fees, and an injunction. According to the lawsuit, they also want Four Star to “fix their testing and labeling practices”.

Analytical Cannabis has reached out to Four Star Manufacturing for comment.

The problem of THC inflation

As the lawsuit notes, THC inflation is a common issue within the legal cannabis sector. Given the demand for high-THC products, many cannabis companies are known to “shop” their products around different cannabis labs until they find one that reports high enough THC levels. Any lab that reports the true, lower amount of THC doesn’t get the contract.

The practice is called lab shopping, and it’s a blight on the cannabis testing sector.

“We still see this today with lab shopping – customers, in some cases, seeking results to be guaranteed,” Jeff Journey, CEO of SC Labs, told Analytical Cannabis in July.

“And there are ramifications for that in the long term. At least for SC labs, we will always comply with our methods that are approved; we will not bow to market pressures to compromise at all. And that might hurt us in the short term. It does; we lose business. I think that’s just the reality of our market today.”

“But I think, in the long term, our belief is that the good guys will win, those that are ethical, those that can be trusted with results, that are consistent with the methods that they have approved.”


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