What Goes into CBD Product Testing?

Several covered Erlenmeyer flasks filled with green plants

Your CBD products are only as good as their components, and CBD analytical testing is the best way to ensure you’re getting a high-quality CBD product that lives up to its billing. Testing helps make sure that you are getting the CBD concentration you’re promised, and that you’re avoiding pollutants that could inhibit your CBD or make it unsafe. Testing CBD for THC is also a vital part of ensuring you’re compliant with laws that regulate where and when you can use higher-THC products.

Cannabis And Cannabinoids

Both industrial hemp and marijuana are variants of the cannabis plant. For many years they were lumped together as a single plant type and listed as a controlled substance under US law. With the 2018 Farm Bill, industrial hemp was finally separated from its illicit cousin, finally clarifying the federal legality of industrial hemp products, including hemp oil and CBD oil derived from industrial plants. Along with its descheduling, however, came new regulations limiting industrial hemp to 0.3% THC concentration. CBD analytical testing, already important to health-conscious users, became vital.

Like THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana, CBD is a cannabinoid. It works on the endocannabinoid system in the human body to produce certain reactions. Along with CBD, cannabis also contains terpenes, some of which are thought to have beneficial effects for people who use cannabis to promote better health and overall wellness. Beyond just testing for THC in CBD, analytical testing quantifies the terpenes present in a sample so consumers can be better informed about the results they can expect.

Keeping It Safe

Another reason for lab scrutiny is to limit pollutants that may be present in CBD oil. Pesticides and chemical fertilizers can cause health problems if ingested. While it’s always a good idea to use a product derived from naturally grown hemp, many producers don’t know the providence of their raw plant, and if they do, can’t know what may have been sprayed on neighboring fields and been caught in an air current.

In addition, some manufacturers rush the CBD oil extraction process. This can leave traces of solvents in the finished oil. While some may be harmless, others can have catastrophic consequences. Analytical testing of CBD oil can help spot these potentially harmful chemicals before they’re consumed ensuring that both growers and manufacturers are releasing safe, quality products to the public.

Organic Contamination

Just as with humans, cannabis can become infected. Microbes can be a dangerous addition to any natural supplement. The formation of mold is also a danger when dealing with raw plants transported in bulk over long distances. Screening for organic contaminants should be part of any CBD analytical testing model.

Microscopes lined up on a counter in a lab

Testing Protocols

Luckily, laboratories have a range of options when testing your CBD for THC, determining its levels of terpenes, or making sure it has avoided contaminants. A wide array of tests can be used to provide a full accounting of the components that go into your CBD. By using industry best practices, like manufacturing in food-grade facilities on pharmaceutical-grade equipment, and the most advanced CBD analytical testing methods, consumers are protected, informed, and have more confidence in the emerging cannabis industry.

Common Testing Methods

Chromatography – Chromatography is a broad range of tests that share a common goal even though they may accomplish that goal through a variety of means: to separate a solution into its component parts and quantify them. Many of the tests involving cannabinoids rely on some type of chromatography. Because CBD oil is stable in a liquid formulation, a type of liquid chromatography is often used as a CBD analytical testing method to verify the concentration of CBD as well as THC.

To perform this test, the sample is forced through a tube that contains another medium that binds to certain parts of the CBD solution. This separates individual cannabinoids as they travel through a tube, slowing them at different rates before they are observed by a sensing apparatus. This gives separate data for each cannabinoid, and the concentration can be verified. Other substances, like some terpenes, may undergo gas chromatography analytical CBD testing as they are suspended in solution as gas molecules rather than liquid.

Mass Spectrometry – This widely used test separates ions based on their mass to charge ratio. It’s extremely popular across many industries. Particles are passed through magnetic fields that “sort” them so a concentration can be measured.

Electron Capture – This method is used in conjunction with gas chromatography to sense organic compounds.

Microbial Analysis – This is a broad term for several methods used to find small organisms like mold, yeast, and some bacteria.

Published Results

Once CBD analytical testing is complete, the results should be available to customers. While a company should maintain its own testing standards, if the testing is done in-house, they should also make sure their results are verified by an independent lab. This prevents bias and helps the entire process be as transparent as possible. This is especially important when testing CBD for THC, as it touches on a legal requirement, and it serves both the manufacturers, growers, and users to have verifiable proof of their CBD’s components.

Setting The Standard For The CBD Industry

The CBD industry is quickly changing, and regulatory efforts are struggling to keep up. It’s vital that manufacturers hold themselves to the highest possible standards in order to promote a safe, reliable, legal cannabis culture. That’s why we’ve chosen to use only naturally grown industrial hemp from United States growers we can count on. We extract our CBD in a medical-grade facility in Colorado using state-of-the-art machines. Finally, we use independent labs for CBD analytical testing to ensure your product is safe and THC-free, then we make the certificates of analysis available to anyone who wants to see our verified results.

You shouldn’t have to guess what goes into your CBD products, so don’t. Order the highest quality CBD products available from Core CBD today.

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