The specter of THC-laced candies is no more threatening than past baseless legends, said Joel Best, a sociology professor at the University of Delaware who has studied the topic since 1983. He’s found virtually no evidence of it happening in real life, despite the annual ritual of headlines and warnings.
“This spreads primarily among people who have no idea what this stuff costs,” he said.
A 500-milligram bag of a THC-infused Cheetos-like snack can be found online for $15 and up, while THC-laced imitations of Sour Patch Kids will cost at least $20. That price makes them something few people would give away, he said.
The legend may have its roots in 1959, when a dentist in California handed out laxative pills coated in candy, causing 30 children to fall sick. The police said 450 of the pills were “put into the trick-or-treat bags of youngsters,” according to a UPI report published in The New York Times a few days after Halloween that year.