Hashish Lab Testing: Great Enhancements Nonetheless To Be Made – Hashish Enterprise Govt

Government regulations increasingly require testing of cannabis flowers and products for their effectiveness, cannabinoid, terpene profiles and contaminants. As important as it is for these tests to take place, it is also important to ask, “How reliable are these tests?” The answer is “not very much”.

In 2010/2011 California NORML and Project CBD initiated a “Ring Test” to assess the accuracy of the analytical cannabis test laboratories. The results of this test, in which 10 laboratories participated, showed that while most laboratories worked within acceptable limits, 3 of the 10 worked unacceptably for half of the tests. Recent research has also revealed potentially dangerous inconsistencies in security testing. Why is this happening?

Lab shopping

In the world of cannabis, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is king. Growers whose harvest tests are higher for THC can negotiate a better price for their products. As a result, growers will likely have their crops tested by multiple laboratories and choose the laboratory that gives them the highest test results for THC. If the product has a cap on the amount of THC it can legally contain, companies will likely look for the lowest possible THC tests.

Lab shopping is not a new phenomenon, but it is likely to continue until a) THC is no longer the cannabinoid of choice; and b) There is greater consistency between labs and the way products are tested.

Cannabis is not a homogeneous product

The cannabis plant contains up to 150 cannabinoids and 220 terpenes. In addition, different parts of plants can contain different percentages of cannabinoids. For example, part of the plant may contain 20% THC, another 15%.

To add to the complications, when making infused products such as foods, tinctures, or topical products, it is extremely difficult to develop a product that consistently tests for cannabinoid levels consistently, especially when manufacturers have low levels of error. This means that it is the job of the manufacturers to provide the laboratories with what some consider to be the perfect sample.

Confused and incoherent regulations

With cannabis still illegal nationwide, states are being forced to enact their own regulations. As a result, different states have different standards for their laboratories. Multi-state operators need to be extra careful about this as there are a number of specifics from state to state – advertising, compliance rules, management of manufacturing facilities, and the structure between wholesalers, brands, and retailers.

However, the jumbled and disjointed regulations are difficult to follow even for those operating in a single state. According to the California Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC), nearly 20% of all products failed laboratory analysis. Of the nearly 11,000 samples tested, nearly 2,000 remained, with the most common reason for failure being inaccurate information on the packaging label.

It’s fair to expect companies to adhere to regulations and make sure their products are appropriately labeled. However, there are a few reasonable reasons for company complaints, including:

  • Lack of standardized processes for labeling and testing products.
  • Extremely little margin for error for food companies, especially with microdoses, where California’s 10% error rate can compromise low-dose THC products in just a few milligrams.
  • Oils, fats, and carbohydrates in infused products can make it difficult to achieve homogeneity between servings.
  • Cannabis is a complex substance that contains hundreds of active ingredients. These are very difficult to test accurately, especially terpenes.
  • The cost of testing can prove expensive for smaller businesses.

Regulations are necessary but must also be appropriate and achievable. If you don’t, then more power will be in the hands of the black market.

What can be done

Apart from the nationwide legalization and the nationwide standardized test requirements, individual states can only create better legal framework conditions. These should be appropriate for businesses to meet consumer needs for accurate labeling and security at the same time. However, states should not make the regulations so strict that the illegal market benefits from them.

This is not an easy task, but instead of federal regulation and oversight, states can only ensure that legalizing cannabis is more success than failure. Unfortunately, this standard has not yet been met. Perhaps the cannabis industry can develop its own standards, but the temptation to go shopping in the lab is still too great given the current market situation and focus on THC.

Comments are closed.