CBD Potency Tests Exposed
Let's talk CBD potency. There has been concern recently, over whether or not many CBD companies are being honest with their labels in regards to CBD percentage. A recent study done by Leatly.com tested 47 CBD products and found that only half were within 20% of being accurate. That's not too good. While some products had more CBD than listed, most had less. I want to talk about CBD testing and more specifically CBD hemp flower testing and why CBD percentage is not the end all be all in regards to quality.
First, let's talk about the hemp potency test itself and the variables contained within. When one gets a standard hemp flower "certificate of analysis" (COA), the lab tests for the major cannabinoids and delivers a percentage of CBD in relation to weight. Many growers will also opt for a "water test" which tells the water content of the dried material. With the water test, the CBD percentage is adjusted to reflect the water content and thus you end up with a higher CBD percentage.
At Dreamland Organics, we do not actually get the water test done, just to boost our CBD percentage. We understand why this would be necessary for hemp biomass growers, as their price is locked to their CBD percentage. In other words, the higher the CBD content, the more money you make! For a craft hemp farm like us, we are not interested in selling much wholesale and surely do not grow hemp for biomass.
We simply are not concerned with the potency, so much as we are the quality of our hemp buds. We feel with the proper genetics, the proper grow methods and the proper drying and curing techniques, the potency will take care of itself. We are big on terpenes and the "entourage effect" and feel that CBD percentage alone does not make for the best hemp flower.
We have tested other hemp companies CBD strains at 17- 20%, but they were devoid of terpenes in many cases and did not pack the same punch as our craft hemp buds. We found that interesting as our hemp flower normally registers between 10-15% CBD. With that said you can adjust our strains for water content, which we do not factor in and they are more likely between 12-17%.
What's more is that there are dirty little tricks many CBD companies play to make their products seem way stronger than they actually are. From photo-shopped lab tests, to adding CBD isolate or kief to hemp buds, there are a lot of rabbits in the CBD scamsters hat. Let me explain how easy it is to deceive the consumer.
One way would be to just send in a hemp bud that you already know tests high in CBD for a lab test. Once you have the COA, you can simply use it on a label of another lot of hemp bud altogether, one that is not nearly as potent. The COA only tests the sample you send in, not the lot, and you can easily just bait and switch your way to online hemp sales.
Another aforementioned trick is to sprinkle a little concentrate on the buds and Voilà, you got some strong hemp flower! At least according to the test sample. The only problem is, the hemp buds you get will not be rolled in kief and will not be as potent as the package says.
Even if the COA is legitimate, I wanted to touch again on the issue of terpenes and the entourage effect. Many industrial hemp farms dry their hemp flower at high temperatures in kilns, thus evaporating most of the plants "terps". So even if the hemp flower tests high in CBD potency, without the terpenes, you are essentially smoking CBD isolate. Sure the cannabinoids are there, but where's the flavor? The flavor of the terpenes contribute to more than just great taste and aesthetics, they actually increase the overall effect.
So how does one know if the hemp flower or tincture they purchase is truly potent, well the honest answer is, you don't! You're going to have to use your discernment, trial and error and intuition to find the premium hemp flower or CBD products you desire. Don't worry there are great, potent hemp products out there, you just have to search.
Or you could just buy from an honest, non morally compromised company like Dreamland Organics and sleep easy. Pun intended. Feel free to check out our reviews, you might even see some of our happy customers mention how our flower seems a lot stronger than 10-15% CBD. It isn't, the truth is, you've been being lied to by the other hemp companies.