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Since the 2018 Farm Bill took hemp-based non-psychoactive cannabidiol (CBD) out of the Drug Enforcement Administration's control and made it legal for sale in most areas, CBD oil and other products have exploded in popularity. While formerly only found in cannabis dispensaries, CBD can be purchased everywhere from the local drugstore to specialized online stores. New sellers are popping up from around the world – but not every CBD product is equal.
With studies reporting CBD's anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, and other wellness properties, the quality of the extract is essential. Poorly crafted or cheap products won't deliver the same results. It's worth buying high-caliber CBD from a reliable source.
Here are seven key factors to help you buy quality CBD products – from how the cannabis plant grew to how it was processed.
CBD is an extract from cannabis plants, which include both hemp and marijuana. The difference is that marijuana plants have high levels of THC, while most hemp plants max at a slight 0.3 percent.
THC is the psychoactive cannabinoid that makes people feel 'high.' Hemp-based CBD doesn't cause that sensation and is legal in forty-seven out of fifty states.
Hemp is a fast-growing plant that readily absorbs everything in the soil. It will take in helpful vitamins and nutrients as efficiently as harmful minerals or toxins. You want CBD from plants grown in fertile and healthy soil.
Many foreign countries are unregulated and are growing hemp in untested soil. For quality assurance, choose. U.S. grown hemp. Before any products go to market, farmers in the United States get certified by the State Department of Agriculture. Each U.S. state that permits hemp cultivation has a local licensing process.
Certified organic hemp farmers undergo additional testing and grow without synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, which keeps those toxins out of your CBD.
CBD extracted from marijuana is grown and tested under the legalization laws of that state. Jampha only uses certified organic industrial hemp plants as a source for our CBD products.
Studies show CBD oils made from whole-plant extracts deliver more measurable benefits than CBD oils made from isolates. Also called full-spectrum oils, CBD extracted from the whole plant contains cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes that work in partnership with the CBD to produce exceptionally higher results.
On the surface, isolates can seem like a good option. They contain 99% or higher CBD and are sometimes called "pure CBD." However, isolates can be made from cheap materials and lack the cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes that create the highly beneficial entourage effect you get with the whole plant extracts.
CBD is in the leaves, flowers, and stalks of the hemp plant but not the seeds. If a product only has "hemp seed oil" instead of "hemp oil," it contains little to no CBD.
Always ask to see a product’s Certificate of Analysis (COA). Trusted companies that are proud of their products make independent test results available to consumers. The COA is a lab report that lists the levels of CBD and THC present in the product, as well as contaminants if there are any.
The U.S. does not require testing of the final CBD oil, so companies that provide a COA took that step on their own.
If you already purchased CBD oil and the label has a QR code, you can review the COA online. First, use your phone to scan the QR code on the label. A notification with a website should pop-up. The website address should take you to the COA. Jampha is working on providing this feature.
When you purchase Jampha, you know you are getting the benefits of the whole plant. We use a technique called cold ethanol extraction which pulls all of the cannabinoids out of the whole plant. A distillation process then removes impurities and we add in our proprietary terpenes profiles. Terpenes and flavonoids change levels significantly during each grow cycle and harvest, making product consistency very difficult. Jampha expertly recreates the exact same uniquely Jampha terpene profiles and blends them into products maximizing the entourage effect rather than focusing on a flavor or a strain name.
Once you get the COA, inspect it carefully. Here are a few things to check:
Does the lab meet "ISO 17025" standards?
A lab that meets ISO 17025 standards and uses testing methods validated by the U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP), the Association of Official Agricultural Chemists (AOAC), or the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia (AHP) adheres to high scientific standards.
Be cautious of companies that test products in-house. The results might be accurate, but a third-party independent lab is more reliable.
How much THC is included?
To legally qualify as hemp oil, a CBD product cannot contain more than 0.3% THC. The COA is an excellent way to verify the accuracy of the product's label.
There isn't enough THC in hemp-based CBD to have a psychoactive effect, but it can register on a drug test in some cases.
If you want maximum CBD benefits with zero THC, a broad-spectrum CBD product includes the non-psychoactive helpful cannabinoids without any THC.
Is the CBD dosage accurate?
The COA should confirm the advertised CBD concentration. On the product label, CBD can be listed as "hemp extract" or "hemp oil." That's the right stuff!
Some products advertise themselves as "whole-plant" or "full-spectrum" because they contain cannabinoids, but they don't contain any CBD! Don't be fooled by products only containing hemp seeds, hemp seed oil, or Cannabis sativa seed oil. These are edible carrier oils for CBD but do not contain CBD on their own.
Checking the COA will verify that you're getting the promised CBD concentration.
With Jampha, our cold extraction process guarantees as many whole-plant extracts as possible in every product. When you purchase the oil, divide your daily dose by the total mg in the bottle. For example, if your daily dose is 30mg and you purchase a 1500mg bottle, you are purchasing enough CBD for fifty days.
Does the Certificate of Analysis cannabinoids?
Any whole-plant, broad-spectrum, or full-spectrum CBD product should show a variety of cannabinoids. There are over 100 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. Common cannabinoids to look for in CBD include:
What measurement are they using on the report?
Certificate of Analyses come in different formats and can be a challenge to decipher. The quantity of CBD or other cannabinoids present in the product will be listed in one of three ways:
If the total amount of CBD looks low for the full product, check if the report lists by gram or milliliter.
Any molds, pesticides, or heavy metals?
In addition to the cannabinoid profile and terpene analysis, check for any molds, pesticides, or heavy metals that could be harmful over certain levels.
Check the status column of these charts and look for a “pass.”
CBD oil manufacturing is not heavily regulated, so it's worth knowing how yours was extracted.
Some of the lowest price CBD oil products use cheap extraction methods that involve toxic solvents, including butane and propane. If you're buying CBD for your health and well-being, extracting it with potentially harmful chemicals works against you.
One safe method of extracting CBD for human consumption uses organic and pharmaceutical-grade ethanol. Jampha uses this system to guarantee maximum benefits from our whole-plant extracts.
Another excellent method is supercritical CO2 extraction. In this process, extremely cold and high-pressure carbon dioxide extracts the CBD oil while maintaining its purity.
CBD manufacturers face a challenge trying to create a consistent product when extracting CBD from a variety of plants. The terpenes and cannabinoids vary from crop to crop. To produce a reliably consistent product, some brands use CBD distillation and then enrich the CBD with terpenes or cannabinoids.
CBD distillation is a complex process of several steps. Towards the final stages, distillation removes impurities by turning the liquid extract into vapor and then back into a purified liquid.
In sum, if you're buying CBD oil, look for products extracted using:
Also important: organic and non-gmo terpenes and ingredients.
Vape pens are easy to use and transport. They produce minimal smoke and help maintain a low profile. However, some vaping products use propylene glycol as a solvent. Burned at high temperatures, propylene glycol can degrade into formaldehyde.
Inhaling formaldehyde can irritate your nose and eyes and may increase the risk of asthma and cancer.
Solve this problem by only purchasing vape products that use solvent-free oils.
As the CBD industry prospers, additional regulations will inevitably be established and enforced. In the current marketplace, it's up to the buyer to manage quality control.
Assuring your CBD oil caliber is as simple as following the seven critical steps outlined above. Most importantly, look for grown in the U.S., cleanly extracted, and tested by an ISO 17025 certified, independent, third-party lab.
Fortunately, you've found Jampha. Our products are carefully extracted from organic hemp and contain a full spectrum of cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.
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