What’s in a lab test?
Many companies are jumping on the CBD bandwagon today as having the newest, best, purest or highest potency product on the market. I can say I have heard it all like, ours has this and ours has that, but, ours is extracted this way and ours helps with this symptom or disease. It’s what seems to be the consensus when speaking with CBD company representatives. I say, “That’s fine. Yours does this and that, but I would like to know one thing. Do you have lab tests justifying what’s in your products? It’s a very simple question I’m asking as a doctor, and if you can’t produce a lab test, then why should I recommend your products?”
The lab companies test for things you may want to know, and things you might never have thought to ask about. For example, potency of the product or which cannabinoids (THC, CBD, CBG, and CBC) and terpenes are present? These are the common questions, but here are some additional questions you never knew to ask, “What pesticides and metals are present and does your product contain mold or mildew?”
If any of the above are present then why would you want to use their product? It seems like common sense to me. I would not eat rotten fruit, old salad or moldy pizza, would you?
Other things I’ve noticed about lab test results from a few CBD companies is that there is no indication of the company/product name or batch number on their lab test. The tests I receive simply had the name of the testing lab, a random number, maybe pictures of a container and a white powdery substance. I have to ask myself, “Is this their actual product?” So, digging further, I decided to call a few labs and speak to someone of authority.
I proposed my questions about product testing and found that labs are independently owned. They follow strict guidelines and uphold the industry’s highest test standards and confidentiality. They recommend that if you are testing a sample that your sample be pictured with your company label.
So I asked myself the question, “Why am I getting lab results from companies with no name or product in the picture?” I hope I’m getting what I’m paying for and not some toxic junk. Maybe it’s a white labeled product, which I don’t have a problem with, I just would like full disclosure and authenticity up front with the products we recommend to our patients. I would like to know that products are made in the U.S.A., tested thoroughly and protect people from possible dangerous products on the market.
Currently, The U.S. Hemp Authority™ Certification Program is an industry’s initiative to provide high standards, best practices and self-regulation, giving confidence to consumers and law enforcement that hemp products are safe, and legal. In an effort funded by the US Hemp Roundtable, and joined by organizations such as the Hemp Industries Association, industry leading firms, top-tier testing laboratories, and quality assessors developed comprehensive guidance for growers and processors of hemp. (http://www.ushempauthority.org/)
Meeting the stringent self-regulatory standards of the U.S. Hemp Authority™, and passing a third-party audit, participants will be licensed to use the Certified Seal of the U.S. Hemp Authority™ on their products beginning January 1, 2019.
Currently, I have requested lab results from some medical marijuana growers in my state to see if my and recently, one grower replying to my email, informing me that they will be adding lab results to their updated website soon. I’m currently researching to see if my state requires lab results be made available to the public for growers and producers.
Dr. Lawrence Bagnell
November 3, 2018