How to Read a CBD Certificate of Analysis

Scientist holding CBD bottle ready for lab

Do you currently shop for CBD or plan to in the future? Have you ever wondered how to read the Certificate of Analysis (COA) for the CBD product you are purchasing?

The team at Smilyn Wellness wants you to understand the importance of checking and understanding what you purchase through the COA. It is imperative to take your time and make sure you choose only high-quality and legal hemp products.

What is a Certificate of Analysis (COA)?

A Certificate of Analysis (COA) is a document issued by an accredited laboratory that includes a full composition of a product. For CBD, a Certificate of Analysis should consist of a complete list of cannabinoids, microbiological levels, terpenes, and possible contaminants such as pesticides, solvent residue, or heavy metals.

The report is also critical for verifying that hemp extracts have less than 0.3 percent THC by weight, as determined by the law’s definition of industrial Hemp.

Why is a COA Needed in the CBD Industry?

When a CBD product is accessible on the market, it can be challenging to determine what is in the product. There are products on the market that are mislabeled. This not only affects brand reputation and deceives customers about what they are paying for.

Always read the COA before you purchase any CBD product.

How to Read a COA for CBD?

Once you located the COA, it is easy to get overwhelmed by the terminology and the amount of information. First, determine who carried out the analysis? It should only indicate an accredited laboratory has provided the results. Smilyn Wellness uses a third-party lab to provide accurate reports and gives our consumers 100 percent accurate information about the product profile.

Dates and batch numbers should be clearly noted for you to verify the COA is up-to-date. The cannabinoid outline should harmonize with the product description, including the type of extract (broad-spectrum, etc.) and potency of the CBD product.

Typically, test results in COA are shown in one of the following ways:

  • Milligrams (mg) of CBD in the full product
  • Milligrams (mg) of CBD per gram (g)
  • Milligrams (mg) of CBD per milliliter (ml)

Commonly, cannabinoids in the COA include:

CBG — Analgesic, anti-inflammatory, bone stimulant, anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic.

CBC — Analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-depressant.

CBN — Analgesic, antispasmodic, anti-insomnia.

You may also see three abbreviations:

LoD (Limit of Detection), LoQ (Limit of Quantitation), and LoB (Limit of Blank). These are terms used to describe the smallest concentration of a measurand that can be reliably measured and calculated by an analytical procedure.

What if CBD oil doesn’t have a COA?

Purchasing CBD from a reputable brand should never be a daunting process. If there is no transparency and no quality guarantee provided by the brand, walk away. Remember, CBD brands that have the best interest of their customers in mind shouldn’t have any problems providing lab test results.

Check out the Smilyn Wellness lab reports for all products.

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