CBD products are becoming increasingly common in the health and beauty care market. As you see these three letters popping up on labels with more regularity, don’t take the product’s purity for granted. Currently, CBD products are unregulated. Therefore, some CBD companies can pass off an inferior product with less-than-thrilling results. Let’s take a look at why you should always view lab reports before purchasing CBD.
Why Are CBD Products Unregulated?
It seems to go without saying that health and beauty products are regulated under the watchful eye of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). While that may be the case for many supplements, such is not so for CBD.
The reason why CBD products are unregulated is due to the fact that hemp’s cousin is marijuana. Up until recent years, many did not draw a distinction between the two.
With medical cannabis sweeping the nation, the world is starting to change its tune on hemp. After all, it has become almost common knowledge that hemp doesn’t have the psychoactive side effects that marijuana does. However, that doesn’t mean CBD has a clean record just yet.
CBD must come from hemp that is approved under the 2018 Farm Bill. That means the hemp plant used to extract the CBD oil must pass specific federal and state regulations. Plus, the crops have to be cultivated by a licensed grower.
While this is a complicated time in the world of CBD, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Last year, the FDA approved its first CBD medication. GW Pharmaceutical’s Epidiolex may be prescribed to patients with severe cases of epilepsy. This monumental breakthrough gives the CBD industry hope that there will be regulation in the future. In the meantime, consumers must do their due diligence and research the CBD brands they are considering purchasing.
What Do You Look for in a CBD Company?
Before you make any commitment to a CBD company, make sure you look into their history. Get familiar with their brand, story and mission. See if they speak to you. Your intuition is a great barometer as to whether you should dig deeper into the rabbit hole or move on to another company.
Next, check out some reviews and testimonials. It’s the internet. If there’s something bad about a company, it’s probably already out there!
You also may want to check to see if your CBD products are certified organic. Joy Organics now offers a line of USDA certified organic products –– including our tinctures and Jarred salves.
Lastly, read up on their process. You want to opt for a company that has complete transparency. Being upfront in an unregulated world goes a long way in establishing trust. Make sure that they use organic ingredients, test their batches for purity and allow third-party testing. If all these boxes are checked, then you can feel confident that you are buying a high-quality product. The best way to ease these concerns is to look up the lab report.
What is a Lab Report?
When you are adding supplements into your daily regimen, it’s important to know what you are consuming. After all, everything you ingest has an impact on your system. Just like you should get in the habit of looking at your food labels, check out the side of your supplements as well.
What’s unique about the CBD industry is that reputable brands can present you with a lab report. To generate a lab report, the company uses high-performance liquid chromatography or gas chromatography to determine all the active and inactive ingredients found in your formula. Thanks to lab reports, you can see if the company pumped their product up with synthetic ingredients or other additives that may dilute the final product.
A lab report isn’t just a glorified ingredients list. It also contains essential information that may make or break your decision to buy a CBD product. Here are a few reasons why you should always check out a lab report before purchasing any hemp-based products.
THC Levels Are Listed
Waters can become a bit muddy in areas where recreational marijuana isn’t legal. That’s because some CBD oil contains THC.
Studies suggest that other phytocannabinoids help maximize the benefits of CBD. This theory is known as the entourage effect. While THC may aid CBD, it’s also the reason why hemp was classified a schedule 1 controlled substance. That’s because THC is the psychoactive component found in marijuana.
Under federal law, hemp plants can’t contain more than 0.3% THC. Therefore, hemp will likely not trigger psychoactive side effects. However, we take the worry out of the formula by removing THC from the final product.
At Joy Organics, our hemp oil still has many of the phytocannabinoids and terpenes necessary to spark the entourage effect. That means you can experience the effects of high-quality CBD oil in all 50 states without worrying about THC.
To give you this peace of mind, a lab report is pivotal. Lab reports divulge the total percentage of cannabinoids within the formula. This sort of transparency also allows you to make an informed decision as to whether our products are the right choice for your wellness needs.
Check Pesticide Residues
As we mentioned, organic CBD products are essential if you are looking to maximize your benefits. Inorganic practices such as pesticides are harmful to the crops, environment and your body.
Pesticides were created to annihilate pests that may destroy crops. These are the same crops that we as humans also want to consume. Suffice to say, can we blame the pests? So, if pesticides are made to hurt pests that like the crops we do, why wouldn’t it hurt our system as well?
Life is spurred on by chemical reactions. When molecules collide, the genetic makeup is altered and a new compound is created. As studies suggest with cannabinoids, those chemical reactions are a good thing! Unfortunately, tossing inorganic ingredients into the mix of things throws off the balance within a formula. Pesticides can alter and diminish the overall potency of your product. Not only that, but some pesticides can even be harmful to your health. That’s why you want to check out the lab results to make sure that no pesticide residues are in your batch.
At Joy Organics, we test for:
While you want to take a company for their word when they say they’re organic, lab results hold them to it. You can see firsthand that only all natural practices were used during the formulation of our products.
Keeps Record of Solvents
In order to get the hemp plant to secrete its precious oils, you need to apply pressure to its trichomes. When these tiny hairs are placed under stress, they burst open to release the phytocannabinoid-rich goodness. Typically, this is done by using pressurized carbon dioxide or food-grade ethanol.
After the trichomes are broken open, its oils are released into the atmosphere. These oils contain CBD and other phytocannabinoids. One of the last steps of the extraction process is separating the hemp particles from what was used to extract them.
Some CBD companies don’t use the best practices to extract their CBD oil. Instead of implementing natural solvents like food-grade ethanol, they opt for inorganic solvents like hexane. These solvents accelerate the process and are cheaper to use.
While cost-effective for companies, solvents such as hexane can be harmful to humans. As the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CBD) states, hexane is present in gasoline and rubber cement. It’s also used as a cleaning agent. Do you really want that in your CBD oil?
That is why our lab reports test for:
We use gas chromatology separation and flame ionization detection to pinpoint any solvents present in our formulas in compliance with The United States Pharmacopeia (USP) general chapter <467>. By following these procedures, you are guaranteed the highest-quality CBD products without compromising your long-term health.
Heavy Metals Exposed
The extraction process is a complex one. Whether you use pressurized carbon dioxide or a solvent like food-grade ethanol, chemical reactions happen every step of the way. Just as we encounter genetic mutations, so may hemp particles. In turn, heavy metals in the atmosphere or new compounds may end up in your formula.
While this is an organic process, these heavy metals may create a reaction that dilutes the overall purity of your product. That is why our lab reports divulge any presence of:
No product with these metals will ever make it out of the door.
Look for Third-Party Lab Testing
Now that you understand the importance of lab reports, it’s even more important to see who is checking these reports for validity. Anyone can type up some numbers and forge a report. Honest companies will have an unbiased party come in and check these results.
At Joy Organics, we test every batch in-house. Once the batch passes our inspection, we print out a Certificate of Analysis. A third-party laboratory will uphold us to the high standards we are proud to have, overlooking our certificates for every product. Upon completion, the third-party lab will present us with their own report.
This practice works much like the checks and balances with the government. Since the FDA isn’t keeping the CBD industry honest, it’s upon us to figure it out. The only way to do this is to remain transparent through in-house and third-party laboratory testing. You can look up any lab report by checking the lot number on the bottom of your bottle and clicking our Lab Results page.
Do you have any further questions about why you should view lab reports before purchasing CBD? Contact us today!
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Todd Smith is Joy Organics Chief Partnerships Officer and Co-founder. Before Joy Organics, he worked in the wellness and nutritional industry for over three decades and helped generate over 1 billion dollars in supplement sales. He has applied that knowledge and experience to empower over 1000 businesses through Joy Organics’ partnership programs. Todd is also the author of a book, podcast, and blog titled Little Things Matter.