A third-party report on UK CBD oils has shown major inconsistencies in terms of quality, safety, and legality. Some oils were found to contain less CBD than advertised or none at all, some had higher levels of the intoxicating THC, and others higher than permitted levels of contaminants.
Phytovista Labs, the UK’s premier cannabinoid testing facility, tested 30 UK CBD oils and found that 38% of products had less than 50% of the advertised CBD content, one product had none at all, almost half had THC levels averaging 0.04%, and some had residual contaminants.
This is quite worrying for consumers and patients who purchase CBD oil in good faith looking for a particular CBD content to match their dosage requirements only to be presented in most cases with less CBD than expected.
Even more concerning though are the contaminants that were found. One product contained 3.8% ethanol which is quite substantial considering 3.4% qualifies as an alcoholic beverage.
Seven products contained solvents such as methane and cyclohexane which although below permitted levels for pharmaceuticals were above food safety limits.
The reason for this contamination is because some producers use chemical compounds as solvents to extract the cannabinoids and as such will always leave residual amounts behind in the oil. Other producers us the CO2 method which is safer but more expensive.
In terms of the intoxicating THC content, it was a negligible amount that will not result in any euphoric high-like effects but it is still above the UK and EU agreed-upon level of 0.02%. As such these CBD oils are illegal and retailers selling them are technically breaking the law.
The report published by The Centre For Medicinal Cannabis, a non-governmental organisation, is a stark reminder of the dangers to consumers when purchasing CBD oil and retailers legally selling CBD oil in an unregulated market.
In light of this report, consumers are strongly advised to only purchase CBD oil that comes from a reputable retailer who can provide an independent 3rd party lab report that will show the exact cannabinoid content and any possible contaminants.
The CBD market is a thriving multi-million-pound industry in the UK with CBD being infused in all manner of goods such as food, drinks, oils and even skincare but this latest news will surely put a dent in this young industry.
The Extract contacted one prominent UK CBD manufacture (who wishes to remain unknown) and asked for his opinion. He said: “The Chinese word for crisis contains the words' danger and opportunity and I believe this is the same thing here. This report will push consumers to only purchase 3rd party lab-tested CBD products and as such remove inferior manufacturing processes and their products”.
Only time will tell if this will be the case.