Majority of marijuana samples from Spain contaminated with human feces


  • A recently published study found that a large percentage of marijuana samples they gathered in the Madrid area had traces of E. coli and human poop.
  • A percentage of the samples also carried a fecal odor, all of the samples with the odor having E. coli.
  • Researchers say that this is probably due to the method of distribution, where marijuana is smuggled through people’s bellies.

A recent study published in the journal Foreign Science International has found that a staggering 88.3% of marijuana samples they collected in and around Madrid, Spain weren’t suitable for consumption. Majority of the samples contained traces of E. Coli and human feces. What’s even more alarming is that some even had levels of these contaminants that are 500 times higher than US law allows for cannabis or European law for fruit.

The 90 samples that were tested for the study were gathered over 12 months. Thirty samples were tested for E. coli, a bacteria that can be found in human intestines and has certain strains that can cause severe food poisoning. The other sixty were tested to check for foreign contaminants, microbiological contamination, and odor.

The samples were shaped like acorns and ingots, 93% of the acorns and 29.4% of the ingots contained E. coli. Forty percent of both samples carried the smell of feces and all samples that carried the odor were also contaminated with E. coli.

Researchers say that this is likely a result of how marijuana is distributed. Though it’s legal in Spain to cultivate cannabis plants for your own consumption, the trafficking and use of it in public aren’t. So the samples which were bought on the street likely made their way to Madrid from abroad.

Manuel Perez Moreno, co-author of the study and pharmacist at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine said that people smuggle the hashish through their bellies, taking laxatives to be able to expel the acorns when they reach Spain.

It is hard to say if the 90 samples used in the study can really be representative of the marijuana sold in Madrid or Spain as a whole. Still, the authors of the study point out that similarly high levels of contaminants are shown in the results of other studies.


Source: IFL Science

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