Barbados sounds alarm on newly discovered synthetic cannabinoids

August 25, 2023  -The Barbadian population has been cautioned regarding newly identified hazardous narcotics that have surfaced on the island.

The discovery

Reports are that the National Council on Substance Abuse (NCSA) sounded the alarm using its Early Warning System.

This move came after the Forensic Sciences Centre analyzed a previously unidentified substance, revealing the synthetic cannabinoids MDMB-4en-PINACA and 4f MDMB-Butica.

Understanding synthetic cannabinoids

According to reports, these man-made, psychoactive chemicals can either be applied to dried plant matter for smoking or be available in liquid form, suitable for vaporization in e-cigarettes and similar gadgets.

Wilfred Abrahams
Wilfred Abrahams. (Photo via Barbados Today)

Voicing concern

During a media briefing at the Eastern Caribbean Project Soft Bible Camp in Ruby, St Philip, Minister of Home Affairs and Information, Wilfred Abrahams, conveyed deep worries over the appearance of these synthetic cannabinoids in Barbados.

He shared that another nation detected these substances in May 2020, which led to 11 deaths within just three months of their introduction.

Abrahams emphasized the severe toxicity and rapid effects of this drug. He further highlighted the lack of any recognized medicinal use for these compounds.

The consumption of such substances poses considerable risks, particularly when it comes to delivering suitable medical care.

Another discovery in Barbados

Scientific insight 

Cheryl Corbin, the director of the Forensics Sciences Centre, offered more context on the substances.

She clarified that these compounds were dubbed cannabinoids due to their resemblance to chemicals observed in the marijuana plant.

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