Generally speaking, a (CIH) certified industrial hygienist for Cannabis operations is necessary for any industry. A company may hire an in-house CIH, or contract one as an outside consultant to ensure employee health and safety, and environmental compliance. A CIH is thoroughly educated, trained and certified to recognize hazards, test for those hazards, and determine when they pose a risk to human health or the environment. A CIH will recommend ways to reduce or mitigate potential hazards.
Importance of Having an Industrial Hygienist for Cannabis Operations
A hygienist will be knowledgeable in all aspects of human health and safety but can specialize in a particular industry–the cannabis industry is no exception. An IH will have at least a minimum level of knowledge and information in the following areas:
- Air sampling and instrumentation
- Biostatistics and epidemiology
- Community exposure
- Engineering controls/ventilation
- Health risk analysis and hazard communication
- Thermal stressors
- Work environments and industrial processes
Why have an Industrial Hygienist for Cannabis Operations?
Cannabis operations are often conducted in highly controlled, complex environments, with biological, chemical, and physical hazards coming into play. Industrial Hygiene concerns specific to the cannabis industry include but are not limited to, humidity related to mold growth, indoor air quality (IAQ), allergens, gas exposure (CO2, CO, and ozone), exposure to pesticides, disinfects, corrosive chemicals, flammable solvents, employee ergonomics, repetitive motions, occupational injuries, noise, electrical hazards, heat exposure, industrial machines and hand tools, extraction equipment, confined spaces, emergencies, workplace violence, waste, etc.