FL: Florida’s Largest Ever Hemp Inspection Sweep, ‘Operation Kandy Krush,’ Uncovers Nearly 70,000 Illegal Products Targeting Children

Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Wilton Simpson announced the results of “Operation Kandy Krush,” the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ largest ever inspection sweep of food establishments selling products that contain hemp extracts.

The week-long statewide inspection sweep targeted the illegal sale of hemp extract products that are attractive and/or marketed to children, prohibited by Florida Law. The sweep included inspections of more than 475 food establishments in 37 Florida counties and uncovered 68,689 packages of hemp extract products — including euphoric, high-potency THC products — targeting children.

“As part of our ongoing commitment to safeguarding Florida’s children and consumers, we launched ‘Operation Kandy Krush,’ Florida’s most extensive hemp inspection sweep ever. Today, we’re proud to announce the results, as we’ve uncovered nearly 70,000 hemp products — including euphoric, high-potency THC products — specifically designed to appeal to children, a blatant violation of Florida Law,” said Commissioner Simpson. “After the Florida Legislature worked this year to reform Florida’s hemp laws, this operation now sends a clear message that illegal and unsafe hemp products have no place in our state, and we will continue diligently enforcing the law to keep our communities safe.”

Historically, individuals used a loophole in Florida’s hemp statutes to manufacture and sell euphoric, high-potency hemp products — like delta-8 — for consumption without restrictions, including to minors. During the 2023 legislative session, Commissioner Wilton Simpson worked with Senator Colleen Burton and Representative Will Robinson Jr. to reform Florida’s hemp laws and better protect consumers and children. SB 1676 added age requirements for the purchase of hemp products intended for human consumption, protected Florida’s minors by prohibiting marketing that targets children, protects consumers by mandating that products sold in Florida be packaged in a safe container, and holds hemp products that are ingested to the same health and safety standards as other food products.

The bill defined the term “attractive to children” to mean manufactured in the shape of humans, cartoons, or animals; manufactured in a form that bears any reasonable resemblance to an existing candy product that is familiar to the public as a widely distributed, branded food product such that a product could be mistaken for the branded product, especially by children; or containing any color additives.

For more information about Commissioner Simpson and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, visit FDACS.gov.

Press Release

Tags: Harm Reduction

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