As the competition for the hearts and money of CBD consumers heats up, the clear winners are likely to be the CBD companies which go to great lengths to implement the testing best practices recommended by CBD industry experts. The following best practices highlight some of the vital tests CBD products should undergo before going to market.
It is critically important for CBD product manufacturers to maintain detailed documents on various aspects of their operations, such as where they source their hemp raw material, the manufacturing processes followed and the analysis reports obtained after testing for different parameters, such as the ingredients in each batch of products.
This documentation provides a paper trail that ensures complete traceability of any product back to the source farm. It is advisable to keep these documents, in either hard or soft copy (or even both), for at least five years.
It is well known that cannabis varies a great deal from one strain, or even variants of the same strain, to another. CBD companies must therefore invest the necessary resources required to ensure that a consumer will get a product of the same attributes each time they make a purchase.
Reference substances (terpene profiles, CBD content, etc.) should be documented so that all product batches are standardized to be uniform. For example, gas chromatograph tests can be done to confirm ingredient uniformity, and different batches of products can be blended so that all are uniform. Once users get the same experience after buying different items of the same product, then a company can be sure that it is making progress in establishing itself as a trusted brand.
The product specification sheet should also include a physical description of the CBD product. The parameters to include in this description may include the appearance, viscosity, particle size, odor, taste and any other such parameters pertinent to the product. This description can help users or other interested parties to identify a genuine product from an adulterated or spoiled one.
Impurities and Contaminants
Consumers are keen on matters of product safety, and tests done to ascertain that impurities or contaminants have been kept well within the tolerable limits help to address any concerns. For example, tests to identify how much THC is in a CBD product are vital, and so are tests for pesticides, fungal and microbial contaminants, heavy metals and residual solvents.
How was the expiry date of the product determined? Appropriate tests to establish how the product fares in different storage conditions need to be conducted to determine when the product will spoil or expire. These test results add weight to the documentation of the CBD product.
Product testing requirements often vary from one jurisdiction to another. For example, California passed Prop 65 which imposes strict testing and labeling requirements for all products destined for the California market. Experts think that the awareness of the complexities of different markets could explain why CBD industry actors like Youngevity International Inc. (NASDAQ: YGYI) and Canopy Rivers Inc. (TSX.V: RIV) (OTC: CNPOF) may even go as far as packaging products destined for different markets differently.
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