The Defense Department issued the Warning Regarding Poppy Seed Consumption and Military Drug Testing memorandum on February 21, 2023.
Drug testing is a common test performed among military units. They are performed at random, and not every member of a unit is tested at the same time. This is completed to ensure the safety and readiness of the military service members.
Poppy seeds have been a concern for drug testing in the past. The poppy seeds come from the poppy plant, which is utilized in the food and drug industry. Poppy seeds are utilized to make morphine and codeine, and poppy seeds can lead to a positive drug test for codeine.
Per the memorandum, recent data demonstrated that poppy seeds have a higher content of codeine than previously reported, so ingestion of poppy seeds can lead to a false positive test due to the poppy seeds. However, there is no test to determine the origination of the positive codeine test. Eating poppy seeds could lead to a positive urinalysis and its consequences within the military service.
Because of these concerns, the memorandum advises service members to avoid the consumption of poppy seeds in all food products, including baked goods that contain poppy seeds. Baked goods include bread, rolls, cookies, cakes, pastries like Hamantaschen and a kolache.
Service members are advised to work with their local legal office for urinalysis results concerns.