New Report Says More Than Half of CBD Products Are Mislabeled

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As cannabis products become more mainstream, there’s a lot of blind faith when it comes to buying edibles, topicals, oils, and more. Just because recreational use is legal in 19 states, plus Washington D.C. and Guam, doesn’t mean every facet of the industry is on the up and up, especially when it comes to CBD and labeling.

Leafreport tested more than 200 CBD products this year for label accuracy, and found many discrepancies about strength, type of CBD used, and that there was even any CBD in the product. 

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The report findings

Spanning 111 different brands, Leafreport had a third party test 35 CBD oils, 40 topical, 40 edible, 22 beverage, and 29 coffee and tea products. At least 60% of those tested, the products didn’t match the CBD strength promised on the label. The 40% that passed were within 10% of CBD strength promised. 

Twenty-eight percent of the products got an F grade for having CBD levels that differed from the label by more than 30%, with beverages being the worst offenders (again). Only 18% of those matched the label, and two didn’t have any CBD at all. And it turns out lesser known brands fared better in testing than well-known ones, which leaves many questions about branding and loyalty in the cannabis space.

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Medical experts weigh in

Several experts commented on the new report, most saying it’s simply proof that more needs to be done for quality control and regulations when it comes to hemp-derived CBD products. 

“CBD is effective for many ailments; this is widely accepted,” naturopathic physician Dr. Carlie Bell-Biggins tells Leafreport. “However proper dosing is still unclear, especially since individual variations within the endocannabinoid system are unique from person to person. Mislabeled products only compound this issue.”

“In the US, the FDA is still reviewing data, particularly on the safety, potential side effects, and benefits of CBD. It’s a frustratingly slow process, impeded by the fact that too many researchers stay away from cannabinoids because of the regulatory gray area,” says Zora DeGrandpre. “This problem is made worse by businesses that don’t follow basic aspects of quality control — selling products that contain the stated amount of CBD and testing for various contaminants. These businesses are giving CBD a poor reputation.”

With the growth of CBD use across the country, it’s high time the industry and federal regulators get on the same page to ensure every product is safe for consumption.

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