Since medical marijuana (MM) was legalized in California in 1996, 23 states and Washington, D.C. have passed laws allowing its use for a variety of medical conditions. From a consumer safety point-of-view, quantitation of the pesticide residues in MM products has begun to attract wide interest. There are several problems associated with analysis of pesticide residues in MM. First and foremost, there are very few regulatory guidelines established to define which pesticides to include or what the detection limits should be, and secondly the matrix is very complex with significant interferences. Finally, sample load is growing exponentially, so the chosen method must be quick and easy to perform. Trace level pesticide analysis in complex food matrices have been done for many years with similar challenges, thus many of the analytical protocols emerging for the MM matrix are based on these well-established techniques.
Triple-quadrupole GC-MS/MS operated in MRM mode provides significant sensitivity and selectivity, but method development can be expensive and time consuming. This poster describes streamlined method development process for analysis of pesticide residues in MM using a QuEChERS sample preparation method, followed by GC-MS/MS detection and quantitation.