At the moment, there are a lot of dishonest sellers in the CBD industry. To sell more products and earn more money, many brands sell products with the wrong labels or even harmful ingredients. If you don’t try the CBD product first, it is hard to know how good it is.
Fortunately, you can now be sure that you are getting exactly what you have paid for since so many CBD manufacturers pay third-party labs to check the quality of their products before they sell them. Here are the basics of third-party testing and why it is crucial for a legitimate cannabinoid purchase.
What Is Third-Party Lab Testing?
When a CBD manufacturer or any cannabis product company makes a new batch of items, the company may choose to send a sample to a testing lab so that an impartial third party can analyze the substance on its own.
When products are sent to third-party testing facilities, they are put through a series of tests. Usually, the independent lab testing facilities do not know where the product came from. By far, the most common type of testing is High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) due to its high accuracy and cost-effectiveness. However, there is also NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy) testing, MS (Mass Spectrometry) testing, and PCR (Polymerase Chain Reactions) testing.
HPLC does not need high temperatures and gives the most accurate breakdown of how much cannabis a sample has. After the HPLC analysis, the lab gives the company a full report of the results. The company that makes THC products needs to decide whether or not to release the lab results.
If the data show that the product has an undesirable amount of THC or that it has heavy metal contaminants, some companies may decide not to share the lab tests yet. Putting off publishing the report buys more time, which makes it more likely that the problem will be found and fixed before a new sample is sent in and the accurate testing starts over again.
Why Is It Important for CBD Companies to Have Their Product Tested?
Everyone knows that the CBD industry is currently unregulated. Thus, brands need to set their own rules if they want to compete with smart consumers. If people are already skeptical, brands that only conduct their own tests will find it hard to convince them that the information on their labels is correct.
Third-party testing can give brands an objective and impartial report about what is actually in each batch of products. Extremely rigorous lab tests show customers that the company has nothing to hide, prove that the product works, and ensure that no dangerous contamination happens in the product during the manufacturing process.
The only way to know for sure what is in the CBD product you want to buy is to have it tested at a lab that is not directly affiliated with the brand. In-house testing can be deceptively wrong or misleading. Moreover, companies may choose not to share the results of any research they do, leaving potential customers in the dark. Here are more reasons why CBD products need to undergo third-party testing.
Prevent Risks of Contamination
Without the results of quantitative tests, it is not possible to figure out how much THC and contaminants are in CBD products. Third-party testing is necessary to find any foreign compounds since contamination can come from many different places.
Even brands with good intentions sometimes have trouble with quality control, which means they might sell products that could be dangerous without even knowing it. Other businesses do not follow safety rules on purpose to save money, which could put their customers in a dangerous situation.
- Hemp plant contamination
Hemp and marijuana plants absorb heavy metals and pesticides in the soil where they grow. It might not take long for a cannabis plant grown in heavily contaminated soil to become bad for people’s health.
Heavy metals can do a lot of damage, so the law limits how much of them you can eat. Even small amounts can cause bad things to happen. Here is a list of heavy metals that poses health risks when consumed:
- Processing contamination
Several production pipelines also use solvents and hydrocarbons to make the extraction process more efficient. However, if enough precautions are not taken, these potentially harmful substances may end up in the finished product.
Most lab reports have a section that says whether or not the product passes the industry standard of concentrations of dangerous compounds. Such contaminants include Hexane, Butane, and Propane.
- Microbiological contamination
Mold, yeast, and salmonella are biological pollutants that cause concern for many manufacturers of CBD products. But since these pollutants are often removed during processing, they pose less of a threat than heavy metals or solvents.
Most laboratory reports have a separate section with data about microbiological pollutants and an evaluation of whether or not the current concentrations are too high.
Assess Product Potency
Lab testing ensures that a product’s effectiveness matches what it says it will do on the label. When shopping for products made from hemp plants, it is common to compare similar items based on the price per milligram of the product. However, doing this can lead to wrong conclusions.
A lab report is the only way to check the amount of THC, CBD, or other cannabinoids in a product. You should not purchase from a shop that sells products without third-party lab tests. If you do, you might be overpaying for products on lower-quality products.
- How much THC should be in CBD products?
Another essential thing to consider is the local and federal laws about how much THC a cannabis product should have. Under the Federal Farm Bill of 2018, hemp and all of its parts are legal as long as the amount of THC is less than 0.3% by weight.
Only by looking at the results of tests done by a third party can you be sure that the products you buy follow federal and state laws. Here are some examples of the best CBD products with lab test results.
Shows Company Transparency
Third-party lab tests prove that the brand is open and honest about its operation. It shows that a company is being completely honest and open about the products it sells. The problem is that getting these tests done costs a lot of money and takes a lot of work. A single exam could cost thousands of dollars and take many months to finish.
What Happens if a Third-Party Testing Laboratory Does Not Test Cannabis Products?
The CBD market is still pretty young, but it is growing quickly. CBD has grown, changed, and spread so quickly that very few regulatory bodies have not been able to keep up. Because of this, the business owners, the consumers, and the industry itself have had to deal with problems.
Potential Risks to Businesses
For businesses that want to grow, the CBD market can be a tough and risky place to do business. The FDA hadn’t yet given CDB approval as a food additive. In New York, CBD cafés were even raided by the police. Because of this, CBD coffee, which was one of the first products to make CBD available to a larger number of people, was made illegal.
Possible Risks to Customers
Not surprisingly, the lack of rules can also put customers in danger. There is a chance that unethical businesses will try to take advantage of the CBD market’s growing profits by selling low-quality products to make quick cash.
You can easily find CBD products being sold online. However, most of these items didn’t have much or any CBD. Because there are no rules to protect consumers, the companies that make these products can pretty much say whatever they want. Since this problem has become so common in some places, the FDA had to put out a statement warning customers about false claims.
Potential Risks to the CBD Industry
Last but not least, the CBD business as a whole is at risk because there are so few rules. Transparency is an essential part of a company’s policy, but it can be hard to get and keep. Low-quality products and false claims have hurt CBD’s reputation. If something like this keeps up, it could set the CBD industry at risk.
What Are the Types of Cannabis Certifications?
Several companies highlight that their products have been certified by authoritative bodies to keep their customers’ trust. There are a plethora of cannabis certifications available. Here is a list of some of the more well-known certifications that are often found on product labels:
- The National Safety Federation (NSF) certifies CBD and hemp products based on these standards:
- NSF/ANSI 173
- NSF 229
- NSF 306
- THC levels
- Residual solvents
- Proof of supplier assurance
- US Hemp Authority shows that the growers, manufacturers, and brands not only follow the federal standards for Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMPs) but also their own higher standards for the quality of ingredients and the excellence of manufacturing processes.
- The USDA Organic certification ensures that the products must be made and processed in a way that meets the requirements of The National Organic Program (NOP.)
- The THC-Free Clean Label Project checks CBD hemp products to ensure they don’t have any THC.
What do cannabis testing lab accreditations mean?
In addition to the above certifications, it is usually a good idea to make sure that the third-party lab you hire has a good reputation and follows industry standards. If you look at the products’ lab reports, trust only the most reliable source. This often comes from labs whose procedures have also been certified.
What Are the Types of CBD Testing Techniques?
CBD is tested in the lab using gas chromatography or mass spectrometry. Gas chromatography, often called “GC,” uses a process to separate the chemicals in a sample mixture. This way, it can be seen if the mixture contains the chemical and how much of it is there. Most of the time, molecules of gas or organic compounds make up these chemicals.
On the other hand, mass spectroscopy is an analytical method that can determine how the masses of molecules in a sample compare to their individual charges.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why is third-party testing important?
A CBD product can have a certificate of analysis, a document that lists everything in the item. The lab report will include the product’s different cannabinoid and terpene content, as well as pesticides and heavy metals. Aside from meeting safety or security standards, most brands choose to have their products tested to get higher product quality, better relationships with customers, and a competitive edge over other businesses.
What does third-party lab testing mean?
A product with a certification stamp on it shows that it is safe and does what it says it will do. An unbiased organization has looked at the product, and the lab has decided that the finished product meets specific safety, quality, or performance standards.
Third-party labs are important for managing a wide range of industries by providing customers with data about a product’s credibility, information, and quality assurance. A certification stamp from the third-party lab will be on the label of a product once it is tested.
What is third-party testing for CBD?
In third-party testing for CBD, the components of the CBD oil or other CBD products are separated and analyzed. Test reports give a lot of information about how much CBD content and other active cannabinoids, as well as heavy metals, residual solvents, and other harmful ingredients, may be present in the product. This unbiased analysis is critical to ensure that the THC levels and the product’s potency are described correctly on the label.
Since the federal government does not regulate CBD products, reputable CBD and hemp companies test their products at independent, third-party labs to prove that they have the ingredients listed on the labels. Having the products be sent to a third-party lab for testing stops low-quality products from getting on the market.
Are all cannabis products required to have third-party testing?
Even though they say their products are pure and effective, not all companies really test their products for those criteria. This is because anything beyond the minimum certifications required by the FDA Good Manufacturing Practices and other state standards is up to the brand. Not every brand wants to get more certifications because it takes time and money.
When you are shopping for CBD, Delta 8, or Delta 9 products, always look for their lab test results. CBD companies do not have to send samples of their products to a third-party lab for testing. Even though this is the case, most of the best CBD manufacturers are still doing it. It is an excellent sign that the company is being honest.
CBD oil that comes in bottles with unknown labels may be illegal and may contain ingredients that are bad for your body and against the law. A bottle that has been tested by a third party independent of the company will have a label with a lot of information or a QR code so that you can easily find all the information you need about the product.
Testing by a third party is an absolute must. From hemp seeds to the finished product, there are too many ways for CBD and other cannabinoids to become contaminated. The only way to prove that a product is safe for consumers is to get results from labs that are not affiliated with the company.
There are a lot of CBD oils on the market that are not worth buying. Businesses are selling oils that do not have much CBD but are labeled as “high potency.” Some are selling CBD oils that are contaminated with molds, germs, pesticides, or heavy metals, all of which can be bad for your health.
Looking for Lab-Tested Cannabis Products?
CBD is still so unregulated in the business world that you should only buy it from companies that are actively testing their products in third-party laboratories. Third-party lab testing is important to find out how pure and effective a cannabis product is.
If you are looking for lab-tested cannabis products, check out the available items here at Harbor City Hemp! Order now for a chance to get up to a 30% discount on selected items. All the products at Harbor City Hemp are tested for pesticides, solvents, cannabinoid profiles, terpene profiles, and heavy metal contamination.
Thus, you can ensure that the items you buy are high-quality and have accurate packaging information. Head on over to our product page when you are ready to purchase safe and effective cannabis products.