Where to buy CBD oil is barely a concern lately. The rise in CBD awareness has birthed a corresponding spike in CBD production.
Although the CBD market is flooded with myriads of product alternatives, too often, quality is scarce.
In November 2018, for instance, the CDC reported at least 52 CBD-poisoning the previous winter – in Utah only.
The unregulated CBD market encourages a disturbing increase of fly-by-night manufactures, exposing unsuspecting users’ life to risk.
Being a relatively new niche, manufacturers are fast cashing out on buyers’ naivety, while it lasts.
Any product can put up a most favorable label to sell out fast. The onus then lies on the consumers to verify, beyond the labels, the safety and quality of their chosen product.
A 2017 study says approximately 70 percent of CBD products online are mislabeled.
Then the big puzzle: how do I know if a CBD product contains what the label says?
Simple – a third-party laboratory test! Many so-called CBD manufacturers and sellers who feed off buyers’ ignorance would rather keep this secret.
What is a Third-Party Laboratory Test?
CBD third-party lab tests are standard test run by independent laboratories to confirm the quality status of CBD products. Sellers present these test results through the Certificate of Analysis or COA.
Basically, the COA reveals the cannabinoid profile and their individual concentration. Importantly, also, it exposes pesticides, heavy metals, residual soil, and related toxic substances the plant might have absorbed from the soil or other pest-control sprays used during the grow phase.
That said, since these same sellers will do anything for sales, not all COA reports are credible.
You may go further to confirm the test lab’s credibility and understand the test results.
What are the Benefits of Third-party Lab Testing?
Here are the typical items in lab tests and their importance.
The most typical reason for lab tests is to know the right compound composition, particularly CBD and THC content, of a CBD product.
For instance, many products labeled ‘Isolates’ contain THC, sometimes, in surprisingly high amounts. Lab tests, in this context, confirm that the isolate labels have what they claim – Pure CBD oil.
For full-spectrum-labeled products, you should confirm they have, albeit, not more than the .3% THC legal benchmark.
Since every cannabinoid has its special effects, a COA explains, at a glance, why a particular product looks more promising for your specific health needs.
Below is the COA of Envy Hemp's 750 MG EXTRA STRENGTH CBD MUSCLE PAIN GEL + MENTHOL. The red box highlights the cannabinoid profile. The CoA pictured below shows 0.436 % CBD or 771 mg per container of CBD Muscle Pain Gel indicating a passing status as the product claims 750 mg per container.
CBD lab tests should also reflect the hemp product’s terpenes profile. This test is similar to that or cannabinoids, several manufacturers find this info unnecessary for buyers and so prefers to silent the terpene status in their COA.
Just as cannabinoids play a considerable role in the quality and effects on users, terpenes also have their unique place. Cannabinoids combined with flavonoids and terpenes offer a complementary result, popularly called the entourage effect, which is thought to boost potency.
Knowing the terpenes present in your CBD hemp oil helps you gauge, and perhaps probe, the effect.
Note also that the terpenes are what give cannabis products the exciting smell. So for if you wish to boost your olfactory experience, check for your hemp oil’s terpene profile.
However, CBD Isolate and CBD Isolate products like Envy Hemp should not register terpenes in their product's COA. Simply, it's pure CBD!
Pesticides and Heavy Metals
A lab test does not only confirm terpenes and cannabinoids profiles, but it also exposes pesticides, heavy metals, residual soil, and everything harmful in your hemp oil.
These harmful bodies usually get to the plant through contaminated grow mediums(soil) or unhealthy chemicals used, for instance, as pest control.
These chemicals are highly toxic and particularly dangerous for immunocompromised patients.
Avoiding chemical-packed CBD products should be a goal for all users. Since CBD is widely ingested for its medicinal gains, when dosed, the resultant long-term effects can be lethal.
Lab test for these undesirable elements discloses the plant’s grow condition and farmer’s compliance to industry best practices.
It is best practice for farmers to, routinely, check the state of their grow soil, as it determines buds’ quality and end-users’ safety.
Farmers ought to test their grow soil for overspills or leftover toxic bodies from previous growing seasons.
Among others, lead, arsenic, mercury, and cadmium are the top toxic metals labs test for. While you may find other chemicals on the COA, be particular about these.
The 'Pricey' Truth of CBD Lab Testing
Testing can be expensive. Managing the grow soil to meet safety and quality standards can quickly add up in cost. In a bid to ‘save cost,’ many farmers by-pass these processes and, dishearteningly, end up with toxin-filled-buds harvests.
Resultantly, the temptation to alter due process and obtain a more favorable lab report for their CBD product spikes. This leads to an unfortunate increase in the content-label mismatches.
To be cocksure, find out the particular lab who made the tests. Check for their ISO/ICE 17025 accreditation. This certification guarantees that they abide by the industry’s best practices and issue only credible, trustworthy lab results.
Besides testing to verify the cannabinoid profile, CBD lab tests help eliminate the chances of consuming pesticides, heavy metals, and other harmful substances drawn from the soil during the growing process.
Summarily, lab tests help you identify and verify quality, as you navigate through the bunch of fakes.
To reiterate, before you buy any CBD product, here are basic red flags to watch in a Certificate of Analysis:
The feds say hemp oil may contain, but not more than .3% THC. Anything more is considered marijuana and, therefore, federally legal. Some state laws hold otherwise, though.
Besides, the COA is a cool way to fish out products that deceitfully lower the THC profiles on labels. Funnily, many times, supposed “Pure Hemp Oil” leaves users stoned.
Less-than-advertised CBD percentage is the most common practice among the fakes. Fact is most products with CBD labels contain everything but CBD. Thankfully, labs are a great way to verify such claims.
Typically, broad- and full-spectrum CBD contains several cannabinoids. In addition to CBD, the test analysis should reveal the contents, though in small portions, of other cannabinoids such as CBN, CBC, CBG, CBDa, etc.
Takeaway... Buy Only Lab-tested Products
The fewer toxins we consume, the better for our health. Although CBD is widely considered safe, many products on the market contain a bunch of inorganic components. Without care, ironically, your intention to improve your health may actually ruin it.
So, before you order, prefer a third-party-lab-tested product and eliminate your fears of ingesting harmful materials.
If you can’t access a seller’s COA, for whatever reason, many other sellers display these items on their websites – even without request.
Thankfully, even with the increasing fakes in the industry, companies like Envy Hemp never compromise on safety and quality.
All our products are tested for cannabinoids, terpenes, pesticides, residual solvent, heavy metals, bacterial, fungus, mold – just name it!
Remember, if your hemp oil is not lab-tested, it’s probably not what you think it is.
Any questions? Feel free to contact us, and our customer-friendly staff will respond shortly!
To view Envy Hemp's latest Certificate of Analysis, please visit our lab test result page
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