Some employers have stringent drug testing policies, whereas others privately consider employee drug use a battle not worth fighting. Of course, views on drug testing depend on what the company does, and the tasks employees carry out. So, what about Cracker Barrel?
There are mixed reports on drug testing at Cracker Barrel. From user experiences posted online, testing is not part of the initial interview and rarely happens during pre-employment screening. But the contract makes clear the possibility of random testing. Employees involved in accidents must take a drug test.
Cracker Barrel’s unclear approach to drug testing keeps employees on their toes. In this post, I will unpick the testing situation at Cracker Barrel and give you some clarity on what to expect. I’ll also discuss methods to help you pass a test.
Introducing Cracker Barrel
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc., or Cracker Barrel, is a Southern-themed country restaurant and gift shop. Set up in 1969 by Dan Evins in Lebanon, Tennessee, there are now more than 600 Cracker Barrels across the United States.
If you work at Cracker Barrel, you might be a cook, dishwasher, host, server, or manager. Your position in the company could affect your likelihood of getting drug tested. Let’s explore the testing risks different employees may face.
Drug Testing at Cracker Barrel
Since Cracker Barrel keeps tight-lipped on how or whether it enforces drug testing, not all this advice may apply. Indeed, circumstances may vary depending on the restaurant and how the manager at that branch chooses to handle testing.
However, online anecdotes from current and former Cracker Barrel employees give us some handy insight. I’ve split this part into two sections – drug testing for regular employees (i.e., hosts, cooks, and dishwashers) and testing for managers.
From employee testimonials, we can deduce that Cracker Barrel does not drug test during the initial interview. However, there are conflicting stories on whether they test as part of pre-employment screening or if they only carry out a background check.
Drug testing certainly goes on at Cracker Barrel – and the mixture of reports from workers suggests a potential random element to it! But they could also make you take a test if they suspect you may be under the influence of drugs at work.
That said, the Indeed page for Cracker Barrel firmly comes down on the side of no testing for regular employees. Many restaurants cannot risk being overly selective when choosing staff and turn a blind eye to employee drug use outside of work.
But Cracker Barrel’s right to randomly drug test employees is made crystal clear in the contract. I recommend setting a good impression when you start. Be prepared for a test upon getting hired and judge the situation as you go.
If you are badly hurt in an accident while on the job at Cracker Barrel, getting drug tested is almost inevitable. They are not going to dish out any worker compensation until they have exhausted all options.
Unfortunately, it’s not clear what type of drug test you would face in this situation. A blood or saliva test would show if drugs were recently in your system. But a urine or hair follicle test could unfairly identify drug use from several weeks ago.
Working in a managerial position at Cracker Barrel could put you under greater scrutiny. While they are less fussy about who works for them in entry-level roles, expect them to be more selective and better-paid positions.
We can’t be 100% sure – there aren’t exactly many Cracker Barrel managers sharing their drug testing stories online. But the best-rated comment under this Indeed question hints at managers getting drug tested.
With nothing definitive to go on, it helps to think of things from Cracker Barrel’s point of view. The success of a restaurant depends much more on the manager than it does a single dishwasher, server, or host. The manager needs to be sober!
For that reason alone, we can assume managers get tested more frequently than regular staff. And any suspicions that a manager is high or drunk at work could lead to an immediate test.
Moreover, the managerial role comes with enough perks to sway most away from drugs. The pay is better and the work less physically strenuous and intensive. But that’s not to say you probably can’t get away with it if you try hard enough!
What Drugs Show Up on a Test?
All standard drug tests can flag up marijuana, opiate, amphetamine, cocaine, and PCP use. Sophisticated and more expensive drug tests can also pick up other substances, including barbiturates, benzodiazepines, and methadone.
Drug tests can detect various prescription drugs, too – but please don’t let this bother you. Employers do not target workers for permitted drug use, although you might have to make the details of your prescription available if you test positive.
Yet with so many unique drugs and products on the market nowadays, you may still have concerns. Let’s run through some well-known substances and discuss whether they should cause any alarm.
CBD products and drug tests
CBD users beware! Some products have the potential to cause a positive drug test.
Hemp-derived CBD edibles, capsules, tinctures, vape juices, and other products could contain CBD-isolate, broad-spectrum hemp, or full-spectrum hemp.
It’s full-spectrum hemp extract that comes with a drug test warning, due to the trace amounts of THC. The Farm Bill’s 0.3% cap on THC levels in hemp-based products is only there to prevent psychoactive effects, not drug test failures.
Until recently, no researchers had analyzed the potential of these products to trigger a positive test. But logically, consuming any quantity of THC creates a risk, with the chance of a failed test only growing higher with regular use.
In 2020, JAMA Psychiatry published an analysis showing that the daily intake of full-spectrum CBD over four weeks may cause a positive urinary drug screen result. Shockingly, the experiment involved a CBD product with 0.02% THC.
CBD products can legally have 15 times more THC than that, and some full-spectrum extracts go beyond the Farm Bill limit. If a product with such low THC levels could lead to a failed test, that suggests many full-spectrum products would.
Considering these risks, I wouldn’t use CBD products made with this type of hemp extract if you have a possibility of getting tested. It doesn’t matter that the THC comes from a federally legal CBD product – it’s still THC with the same THC-COOH metabolite.
Delta-8 and drug tests
Delta-8 products are thriving as a legal, hemp-based form of marijuana. But their legality won’t give you any protection in a drug screening. Delta-8 is a THC analog with an almost identical molecular composition to THC.
Ergo, delta-8 also has a similar metabolite to THC. That’s bad news for drug tests, which detect all THC-like substances in addition to THC itself. And it’s not just delta-8 – delta-10, HHC, THC-P, and THC-O products can also make you test positive.
Kratom and drug tests
Whether you take kratom to relieve pain or recreationally for its euphoric effects, you can rest easy with drug tests. As of March 2022, none of the standard drug tests used by employers can detect the alkaloids responsible for kratom’s effects.
Compared to other drugs, kratom is small fry and not something employers think about much. That said, drug tests for kratom products have come onto the market recently, proving that it’s not impossible to check for.
Kratom users should have nothing to worry about, but I still suggest being discreet. You don’t want to let anybody know you take any drugs, or they may put more effort into catching you out.
Types of Drug Tests
Cracker Barrel doesn’t specify what drug tests they use, and employee testimonials don’t give much away, either. But let’s consider the drug tests you might be asked to take if worst comes to worst.
Urine testing remains the most common way to check for employee drug usage. Companies like these tests because they are hard to fake when taken on the spot and they can detect most drugs for longer than saliva and blood tests.
Saliva (mouth swab)
Saliva tests are a faster, easier, and cheaper approach to drug testing than urine screening. Testers can take a sample in seconds and mouth swabs do not invade employees’ privacy like urine tests.
Moreover, mouth swabs determine more recent drug use and not consumption from potentially weeks ago. For employers like Cracker Barrel that can’t be picky about who they hire, these tests more accurately show if someone is currently fit for work.
While urine and saliva sampling may occur randomly or as part of pre-employment screening, blood tests only happen if you have an accident.
These tests definitively show if drugs were active in your system at the time. Conversely, drug metabolites often don’t appear in urine for a few hours.
Drug Test Detectability Windows
Marijuana: Saliva tests can detect marijuana usage within a few minutes of consumption and for up to 48 hours. Cannabis metabolites stay in your pee for several weeks, but the substance no longer shows up in your blood after 36 hours.
Amphetamines: Adderall and other central nervous stimulants have a five-day detectability window in urine and saliva. Blood tests can pick up amphetamine use for roughly 48 hours.
Opiates: Codeine metabolites exit your urine within 48 hours, but heroin may stick around for seven days. But it’s a reverse situation with saliva tests, with heroin becoming undetectable after five hours but codeine remaining present for up to 4 days.
Blood tests can detect heroin and codeine use for six and 12 hours respectively.
Cocaine: You may have heard cocaine users talk about how quickly the drug exits your body. Cocaine has a relatively short 72-hour stay in urine, but it does hang around in your saliva and blood for up to two days.
PCP: Also known as peace pills and Angel Dust, PCP can show up on a urine test for two weeks. In contrast, mouth swabs can only pick up PCP for 48 hours. PCP stays in your blood for a maximum of 24 hours.
3 Tips to Help You Pass a Drug Test
If you need assistance in passing a drug test, you have come to the right place. Maybe you need rapid results and don’t have time to wait several weeks for a substance to clear your system. Help is at hand with these three tips!
Drinking water before a urine test makes a negative test more likely and it won’t cost you a cent. The more hydrated you are, the higher the water content in your urine will be, diluting any drug metabolites in your system.
You will only test positive if your drug levels exceed a specified threshold. While drinking plenty of water doesn’t guarantee a pass, it’s a free and legal method that’s certainly worth exploiting.
Use detox products
Detox products can help with various types of drug tests. Drinks and pills clean your urine, mouthwashes remove drugs from your saliva, and shampoos hide drug metabolites in your hair.
In theory, you could still fail a test after using a detox product, and some have higher success rates than others. But the increasing demand for them suggests people are getting great results.
Use synthetic urine
Fake urine is the only way for current drug users to be sure that any illicit substances in their system won’t show up on a test. However, the sample must still pass as real urine, and you’ll have to get the synthetic pee in the cup without making anybody suspicious.
There are several fake pee products available, but Clear Choice’s Synthetic Urine remains a best-seller. Crucially, their urine has all the traits and properties of real pee, which some of the older and lower quality brands do not.
If your employer conducts drug tests under supervision, you will need a synthetic urine belt and a prosthetic penis device. Otherwise, it will be obvious you are not providing a genuine sample.