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Different types of Lab Test

Sep 11th 2020

Different types of Lab Test

3rd Party Lab Testing

As part of our commitment to quality without compromise, we make sure that every step of our process is transparent. Complete Hemp is vertically integrated and we do not source our products from outside suppliers. This allows us to monitor and control our entire supply chains from end to end. To ensure utmost quality and credibility, we voluntarily undergo third-party lab testing from an ISO certified laboratory, making each product complete with batch number, lot number, and expiration date.

Why are products tested?

The goal of third-party or independent lab testing is to provide an unbiased analysis of CBD products. This is especially important in a saturated and often unregulated market such as CBD, where ethical practices should be followed by default. The tests are used to indicate the quality, purity, and potency of a CBD sample. Having a CBD product tested ensures that the product abides by the governing law in that country.

Going through a third-party lab testing is a step to bring assurance to customers and to create integrity for the company. It’s simple, if you can’t find third-party lab tests publicly available on a company website, then you’re better off moving on to another one.

How are products tested?

First, a certificate of analysis (COA) is a fundamental qualification for a testing facility to have as it ensures full compliance with regulations. There are several ways to test CBD products and currently, there are no official regulations defining how companies need to test these products. But, the industry standard is HPLC (high-performance liquid chromatography) due to its cost-effectiveness and high accuracy. Here are some methods on how third-party testing work:

  1. HPLC Testing (High-Performance Liquid Chromatography) - The standard method used to test the concentration of cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. This involves matching up the amount of density from a tube with known densities of the different cannabinoids to get accurate concentrations.
  2. PCR Testing (Polymerase Chain Reactions) - Fast and inexpensive testing option primarily used to test for biological contamination by analyzing strands of DNA in a sample and matching it up with known DNA patterns of bacterial, fungal, and protozoal bacteria. The test can provide information on how contaminated a sample may be.
  3. NMR Testing (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy) - Much faster and cheaper than HPLC and require fewer solvents to work. It may not be as accurate as HPLC.
  4. MS Testing (Mass Spectronomy) - Primarily used to identify the presence of heavy metal contaminants, but can also be used to identify cannabinoid profiles.
  5. Thermogravimetric Balance - This technique assesses the amount of moisture in a sample which could eventually lead to fungal growth. Here, the sample is slowly dried over time, and any changes in mass are recorded.
  6. Gas Chromatography (GC) - Similar to HPLC wherein the retention time of the sample is recorded. However, the sample is vaporized and pushed along by a carrier gas (mobile phase nitrogen gas) over the stationary phase (usually a solid).
  7. Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) - This method looks for heavy metals in a sample.

What do you test for?

Third-party lab testing involves a wide profile of tests conducted on every sample. These include:

  • Heavy Metals
  • Residual Solvents
  • Pesticides
  • Organic Toxins
  • Terpene Profiling
  • Potency