OpenVAPE throws allies under the bus; drug tests employees

For years, suspicionless drug testing has been used to demonize people, not make workplaces safer. And now, we’ve got some idiots in the cannabis business who are jumping on the drug testing bandwagon. This is really pathetic.

O.penVAPE, the Nation’s Largest Cannabis Brand, Will Test Employees for Dangerous Drug Abuse

O.penVAPE, the largest brand in the cannabis industry, has announced it will begin testing its employees for dangerous drug abuse.

Todd Mitchem, O.PenVAPE’s chief revenue officer and public spokesperson, said the company wants to lead by example and reinforce the important differentiation between cannabis and other scheduled drugs.

“Unlike dangerous drugs, cannabis can be part of a healthy lifestyle that promotes wellness,” Mitchem said. “We always encourage consumers to use cannabis responsibly, and, as such, we have implemented a stringent drug policy for our own employees. O.penVAPE understands that, as the largest brand in the cannabis industry, our view holds weight — and our view is simple: we won’t tolerate dangerous drug use by our employees.” […]

“We don’t want any misconceptions about the goals of our company. We promote wellness and a healthy lifestyle,” Mitchem said. “Dangerous drugs have no place in the workplace, and we maintain the right to drug test any of our employees. But we accept a person’s right to choose cannabis for recreation or medicinal benefit.”

What a stupid move.

Marijuana Majority’s Tom Angell called them on it and got this response:


Totally classless, and totally clueless as to the efforts that got him to a place where he can sell cannabis legally.

This is someone who has no principles whatsoever and is just looking to cash in on the cannabis boom. We need to show him that treating people this way didn’t work when alcohol was the “good” drug, and it isn’t acceptable when cannabis is the “good drug,” either.

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48 Responses to OpenVAPE throws allies under the bus; drug tests employees

  1. thelbert says:

    i’m in the market, so it’s good of them to remind me not to buy one of their vapes.

    • Windy says:

      I have one, it’s nice, but I will not buy another if this one fails. The dispensary where I got it stopped selling them a couple months ago, for other reasons.

  2. Howard says:

    I think it’s common knowledge that all openVAPE employees assemble the company’s products using only their feet…while operating a high speed locomotive around hair pin turns…blindfolded…and hanging upside down…

    Very dangerous work. And dangerous drugs can only compromise “employee safety” given the treacherous manufacturing environment described above. To which I must add, “what about the children?”.

    [Heh, just had to type “high speed locomotive”. Haven’t put those words together in a while]

  3. Annoying Signs Removed says:

    Defy. Resist. Evade. Smuggle.

  4. N.T. Greene says:

    I hear tax subsidies or whatever are super nice to cannabis companies.


    …I mean, really? I’m not sure I get the point. Maybe they have a friend who owns a lab.

    And it’s not like most other drugs clear your system in just a couple of days… Oh wait they do.

    So what’s the point? And if Wolf of Wall Street is to be believed, cocaine makes you one focused, hardworking motherfucker.

  5. N.T. Greene says:

    And I’d have to say that smacktalking Marijuana Majority’s dood over legitimate criticism is the key to isolating yourself from the very people you seek to impress in the coming years.

  6. allan says:

    and let the boycott begin!

    Share it far and wide, let them know and let them feel it.

    contact: (already sent my boycott message)

  7. kaptinemo says:

    Makes it very easy for me to choose, when I decide to buy one.

    I certainly won’t be buying any of theirs, that’s for sure.

    The whole idea behind drug law reform was to return to the people the freedoms stolen under false pretenses. The substance was actually of no consequence; it could just as easily have been kumquats or parsnips that were prohibited.

    It’s the core idea behind prohibition, that grown adults are relegated to being superannuated infants by their self-appointed ‘betters’, causing the loss of personal sovereignty, which is the very cornerstone in the foundation of personal freedom, that is so objectionable.

    As it is, as word of this spreads through the cannabis community – and amongst us, it spreads fast – I imagine some of their stockholders will be taking a second look at their investments…and thinking of selling.

    For, I expect a precipitous drop in their value is in the near future.

    • allan says:

      Kap, I hope any upcoming thuds will be the sound of their value hitting bottom.

      Mr Mitchum doesn’t get that flipping us the bird and making kiss-kiss with DuPont and Co. is uh, more than slightly counterproductive. And schtupid!

    • drew bright says:

      Maybe Mitchem is related to Florida Govner Rick Scott whose wife owns a pee-test company..excellent point about the fundamental issue of giving up personal sovereignty ✊

    • Plant Down Babylon says:

      Whats the quote that’s relevant to their owner?

      “better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt”

    • Windy says:

      The contact page would not allow me to input any data, but they have a facebook page, to which I posted my comment and quoted you, kap, (for good measure).

  8. John Breeding says:

    Good for me you pathetic sell outs. I just bought a volcano 😉

  9. Jean Valjean says:

    “Growns up need to behave differently” Todd Mitchem.
    Differently to what? Growns down perhaps? Or is it “Groans Up” mispelt? I’m confused…

    • B. Snow says:

      Maybe = he’d just gotten done re-watching “Swingers“, there’s a seen were Vince Vaughn’s character ‘Trent’ shows he’s too much of an ass while drunk to even eat breakfast sociably. He uses the term “growns up” in the powerful ‘Rule of Three’ form:

      “Cuz you’re growns up, and you’re growns up, and you’re growns up!”

      Unfortunately, I find this is (more or less) representative of ‘most people’ that go out drinking on a regular basis. It’s notable that in this scene Vaughn delivers his character’s over-the-top rant – in a style that he’s truly “Made” his own.

      (Do I get extra points for quoting a topical on-screen movie ‘rant’ – while simultaneously referencing another film full of similar rants, AND doing it in the form of a pun?)

  10. Nunavut Tripper says:

    I just sent my boycott message to Openvape and also sent a heads up to the forums at Fuck Combustion.
    Lets try to stir up a shit storm and send them running for cover.

    • darkcycle says:

      Plastered this all over Facebook already. Of course, they are going to find that piss tests are all but useless for anything BUT cannabis, since that is what they were really designed to test for…but they should be put through the wringer for this, prohibition is the problem, responsible drug use is not.

  11. Duncan20903 says:


    Are they testing for drinking alcohol? I’ll bet you didn’t know that sometime in the first few years of the century that the Frankensteins isolated inert metabolites of drinking alcohol and invented a urine test for detecting recent drinking alcohol use after BAC has fallen below .02.

    What is ETG?

    ETG stands for Ethanol Glucuronide. It is a direct metabolite of alcohol (ethanol) with a long urinary elimination time. Its presence in the urine or saliva may be used to detect the recent ethanol ingestion even after the ethanol alcohol itself is no longer detectable. The presence of ETG in urine or saliva is a definitive indicator that alcohol was ingested.

    Oops, never mind. I just noticed that the company calls Denver home. Colorado law wouldn’t allow them to take any adverse action against an employee for using a legal product when not on duty. Yes, Colorado does forbid employers for predicating employment on condition of not doing something that’s legal. No, at this time it doesn’t apply to cannabis because The Colorado Court of Appeals said that Federal law makes cannabis illegal. I thought the ruling very sketchy because it has the State enforcing Federal law and that’s a big no-no. The Colorado Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal. You likely couldn’t find a more sympathetic petitioner. Mr. Coats is a quadriplegic.

  12. Servetus says:

    Todd Michem is doing something very odd. He’s introduced social dominance into his marijuana sales business by placing marijuana consumers at the top, while all other drug consumers fall below them in an inverted social acceptance scale involving maturity. Then he’s treating his employees like children by assuming they can’t make smart choices for themselves about their own drug use.

    Imagine if in the near future a different company selling legalized psilocybin mushrooms were to drug test its employees for cannabinoids in order to eliminate the competition from Todd Michem’s hash-oil business. A new Molecule War could be on the horizon. No one would profit but the lawyers.

  13. Daniel Williams says:

    Mr. Angell could have been a bit more diplomatic and less demanding – tho I’m not supporting Mr. Mitchem. Any public spokesperson typing growns up instead of grown ups shouldn’t get too much of a break…

    But it’s quite possible OpenVAPE employees enjoy a work environment where hard drugs are not tolerated. Anyone think of that? Employers should be free to set conditions for employment, just as individuals don’t have to work for someone they don’t like.

    It doesn’t seem there’s much difference between outrage and bullying these days.

    • Setting conditions for employment doesn’t have to include an invasion of a persons body or biological content. Employee performance issues are what company supervisors are for. Drug testing is a corporate scam that intrudes on the bill of rights and adds unnecessary expenditures to any corporate product.

      Drug testing has become the federal governments favorite tool in the war on drugs, specifically marijuana. That is drug testings primary value from the federally viewed level on down. Without federal subsidy and support the drug testing industry would be a corporate bit player hard pressed to reach the penny stock level. Corporate America never did need drug testing in the past, and it doesn’t need it now. Drug testing seems to be the new norm these days.

      Its not normal at all. It violates human dignity.

    • allan says:

      from what Pete posted all Tom asked was, can we talk before the fit hits the shan?.

      Todd said no.

      I won’t disagree that employers have the right to set conditions of employment (I lost that argument waaay nack). But I do disagree that drug testing is effective business policy.

      Paying attention to one’s employees is the best drug testing method out there. While what an employee does in private is, well, private, no? If it’s affecting work performance than the work performance is the key, not the pee.

      And more simply put – drug testing sucks.

      • Zach says:

        Allan, I’ve always argued that a business should pay me 24 hrs a day seven days a week if they want to control me away from the 40 hrs a week I am there. But it has not been successful. I do still hold a winning record over drug tests. I am 12-3 and still employed.

      • The problem, Allan, is that Tom was passive-aggressive: let’s talk, but if you don’t change your policy ASAP, I’m gonna fuck with you. How progressive…

        I agree that drug testing sucks. But it’s up to the employer to make the decision, and it’s up to the individual to agree or seek employment elsewhere.

        My comment received 4 thumbs down – in all my comments here over the years, I’ve only received a total of 2. No big deal, but it does go to my point made in the last sentence of that comment.

        • allan says:

          perception or projection Daniel?

          I read it as not threat from TomA and the MM but the inevitable threat from folks like, well… me and a whole buncha couch ‘taters here and everywhere.

          “While the inquiry team could see a role for employee drug testing within safety-critical areas (although even here they were far from convinced that such drug testing was effective), there was deep scepticism as to the value of such testing more broadly. Indeed, the inquiry team noted that ‘For the most part, it is unclear that anything can be achieved through drug and alcohol testing that could not be done better through other managerial and supervisory processes’”
          Source: Lloyd, Charlie and McKeganey, Neil, “Drugs Research: An overview of evidence and questions for policy,” Joseph Rowntree Foundation (London, United Kingdom: June 2010), p. 54.

          And my friend (no thumbs down from me) I have to ask, drug testing is acceptable bullying…?

        • Adobedoug says:

          If you think getting thumbs down on your post is bullying, you don’t know what bullying is.

        • Daniel Williams says:

          I know Tom, Allan. Nice fellow, but his agression toward those not conforming to his view has been displayed many times. Based on that, I answer projection (If the question is my perception or his projection.)

          And no, getting a thumbs down is not bullying. Perhaps a bad example. But there is no denying that outrage has gained a new componet of late, that of punishment (or bullying, if you prefer). The outrage may be faux, but the demand for scalps are not.

        • darkcycle says:

          Dan, I gave thumbs down very simply because IMHO, it’s none of an employer’s business what his employees do with their free time. If drug use is creating an actual performance issue, deal with it. Otherwise, if I’m not paying them, it’s none of my concern what they do with that time.
          And it may be up to the business owner to set the conditions of employment, but just try to discriminate against ANY OTHER GROUP (other than drug users)in your hiring practices and see how fast the lawsuit is filed.

    • Duncan20903 says:


      The company is free to set its own policy. I’m also free to have an opinion on that policy and to express that opinion. Why in the world would anyone think that letting the company set it’s own policy requires that people keep their opinions to themselves? Did you see anyone lobbying to force the company to change its policies?

      Anyway, unless I miss my guess this is a product of corporate Stockholm Syndrome and has little or nothing to do with the company’s preferred business practices. I think it highly likely that this policy was adopted to appease the prohibitionists and curry favor in an attempt to be less of a target when the JBTs decide which company in this new industry to screw next.

      I think that this decision is very understandable. (Understandable does not mean that I think it’s right.) Based on my own observations made for at least 15 years I believe that there is a not insubstantial cohort of people who have no problem with cannabis law reform, but who can’t even imagine the thought that abandoning the proven, epic failure of public policy which we like to call the war on (some) drugs might be the better choice for our society. I also believe that there’s a not insignificant cohort of nattering nabobs of negativism who are frightened and convinced that cannabis is the gateway to re-legalization of other popular substances on the Federal naughty lists.

  14. strayan says:

    This kind of drug apartheid needs to end.

    There is no rational scientific basis for what we have learnt to label ‘soft’ or ‘hard’ drugs.

    • allan says:

      the dangerous drugs are advertised on TV… and 45 seconds of a 60 second spot will be on side effects (but note the images are always contrapuntal to the words)

  15. darkcycle says:

    O-pen. So many better alternatives are out there. My current choice for CO2 oil is the Kanger Pro-Tank. Unlike the O-pen, it’s a DUAL ELEMENT pen top vape that wicks from the bottom rather than the top. For waxes the best current choice is the SEEGO V-hit. For herbs…use a home vape or a pipe. The pen technology isn’t there for flowers yet.
    You can take what I say with whatever grains of salt you like, but I’ve been on top of this technology since 2010, and the first ‘frisco medi-cup. That was when they first started adapting this tech to cannabis. I met some of the people who initially hit on CO2 for this, as it’s the only process that produces a product anything like a liquid at room temp. The current CO2 dual element pens are as good as full on Nail hit dabs. I’ve inadvertently ended a couple of sessions by turning myself into a hacking, sweating snot-ball with an over done hit from my current pen.
    Boycott O-pen? I don’t need to, I have access to better.

    • claygooding says:

      I had an EZ-vape for a couple of years and didn’t enjoy the buzz as much so I sold it to a cougher that couldn’t smoke like he used too.
      They can be one of the most economical tools if you vape the trim leafs from your grows,,but I got to liking cannabutter better than vaping,,I am a sucker for chocolate chip cookies just strong enough that one is a party and two is a nap.

      Oils and waxes,,too me come as close to a Marinol buzz,especially waxes,as you can get,,straight downer and very little inspiration,,of course for some slowing the mind is their goal so I suppose I am a poor target for any vaporizer company.

      Trim butter: Each oz of powder dry shake and stems use 1 stick of butter,,I wait until I have 3 oz and use a small slow cooker set on low so the cannabis,3 sticks of unsalted butter and water are doing a slow boil for 12 hours. Drain off through an old t-shirt(clean tastes better)and cool in the fridge overnite,,butter forms on top,,spoon out and check bottom for any residue veg,,,melt down and add more butter until it measures one cup,,split into 2 containers and you have the butter for 2 Betty Crocker double fudge brownies(with the Hershey syrup pack inside)or two same company’s chocolate chip cookies mixes that make appx 30 cookies each,,,

      • primus says:

        Better Butter Recipe: Place your trim and butter in a bowl over boiling water or use a double boiler, cook for several hours, strain, let settle, pour off pure butter leaving sludge behind. Yummie, and no water to deal with.

        • Duncan20903 says:


          Your yield will taste a whole heckuva lot better if you wash/soak the vegetable matter as if you were making tea and discard the waste water before adding the butter. The good parts are fat soluble. Most, if not all of the nasty taste is water soluble.

  16. allan says:

    well it seems a “discussion” is indeed starting, Controversy Erupts Over O.penVAPE’s Drug-Testing Policy

    “Doug McVay, who edits Drug War Facts, takes exception to any drug testing – whether it’s for marijuana or so-called ‘dangerous drugs.’ ‘Urine testing finds nothing,’ he tells CelebStoner. ‘Cocaine and heroin are eliminated within a day, alcohol within eight hours. I’ve worked since 1988 to educate people about the fact that urine testing and drug testing generally is a waste of time. It’s ineffective, inefficient and degrading, and is no replacement for adequate management and employee supervision. It’s the tool for tools who don’t have the skills to run a company.'” Read more at [link above]

    I’ve been in an exchange over twitter with OpenVape’s chief revenue officer, Todd Mitchem. He said explicitly, directly, and clearly that he would be very happy if the news about his urine testing program could be announced at every GMM rally in the world on Saturday.

    • darkcycle says:

      He’s likely to get his wish. But I don’t think the response will be to his company’s advantage…

    • Borat says:

      Doug is a hedonist. (I remember Montreal,is he still getting young girls drunk so he can nail them?) But the fact remains, every cocaine user I’ve known eventually turns into an asshole.

      The gay movement only got traction once they kicked out the NAMBLA types.

      • allan says:

        yeah, well you’re being chickenshit… put your real name on that comment. Talk shit and own it or shut up.

  17. Tim C. says:

    It’s the State offering cheaper rates for workman’s comp if they test!
    It’s all about the money, don’t matter what side your on everyone takes advantage of the fella on the ladder below them!

  18. N.T. Greene says:

    Where did our dislikes come from?

    …is that you, Kev?

  19. Duncan20903 says:


    Facebook has claimed its first human life. Doesn’t this make it official that Facebook is more dangerous than cannabis?

    Woman posts about ‘Happy’ song on Facebook before dying in car crash

    Weisner said, “In a matter of seconds, a life was over just so she could notify some friends that she was happy.”

  20. Duncan20903 says:


    Have you ever seen a Congressional Representative or Senator who publicly berated and issued ultimatums to himself?

    Congressman Pushes ‘Conservative’ Plan for Marijuana at Pharmacies
    Pot reformers see change on the horizon after close 222-195 vote in House of Representatives.

    Rep. Morgan Griffith, R-Va., quietly introduced a bill Monday that would end marijuana’s status as a Schedule I substance, allow doctors to prescribe the drug – if their state authorizes them to do so – and permit patients to pick it up at their local pharmacy. “This is a very reasonable, conservative-type approach,” Griffith tells U.S. News. “It’s conservative because we’re saying to the government, ‘You’re out of line here, step aside and let us treat people.’”

    It reminded me of the hostage scene in Blazing Saddles:

  21. Dave says:

    I switched to V.Stick instead of O.Pen because of the customer support issues and have never been happier.

    I’m shocked to hear that they are doing drug testing, just doesn’t seem right for the business they chose.

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