But how can you know for sure you’re getting pesticide-free weed without testing it yourself? It can be cost prohibitive for patients to have all of the tests done on their bud that a dispensary would do (though Know Your Grow offers pesticide-only screening to patients for $25), so Danko recommends people get a loupe magnifying glass and examine their bud for themselves.

“If there’s mold, you can see it,” he says. You’ll also be able to see bugs, bugs’ webs, or their feces. If you spot dead mites in a bud, that’s a sign there was bug infestation, and a sign it was treated with pesticide.

You can also ask your provider questions. Were any pesticides used in the creation of this medicinal cannabis? If yes, which products? Was it a “bomb” or direct application? Has it been tested by a lab? What was the result? Has it been screened for mildew, mold, and volatile organic compounds? If so, what were the test results?

By asking your grower, dispensary, or caretaker these questions, you’ll learn exactly what was done to your bud, and it’ll let your provider know you expect quality medical marijuana.

If the provider doesn’t know, doesn’t know how to get their medical marijuana tested, or is dismissive of your questions, these are red flags — and it’s probably time to find a new dispensary or caregiver.

And, as the medical marijuana industry grows and laws change, standards will be set, and programs such as the “Clean Green Certification” (cleangreencert.com) will offer consumers confidence in the purity of their cannabis products.

In September I’m planning a trip to France. I have my license/permit to use medical MJ, but can I fly into France with it?

_Patient Flying

The short answer: “No, they cannot travel internationally with their medical cannabis,” says Allen St. Pierre, executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). St. Pierre notes that there are no international treaties protecting medical marijuana patients.

Got a Burning Question about marijuana, drugs, or the drug war? Tweet it to @asktheduchess or e-mail it to theduchess@valerievandepanne.com.

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