To ask the Secretary of State for Health, when his Department conducted its most recent study into the potency of skunk cannabis; and if he will commission a new potency study with respect to that drug.
In 2008, the Home Office Scientific Development Branch published ‘Home Office Cannabis Potency Study 2008’, which noted that skunk cannabis was “on average, 2-3 times that of imported herbal cannabis or cannabis resin.”
In August 2011, the Department published ‘A summary of the health harms of drugs’, which summarises the scientific evidence about the risk factors associated with a range of licit and illicit substances, including skunk, commonly used in the United Kingdom. It notes that the:
“health effects of increases in the potency of cannabis products are not clear; may depend on the impact on routine use, however there is evidence of binge use among some users increasing the risk of dependence and psychotic symptoms”