Certificate of analysis
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How to read a certificate of analysis (COA)?

Do you know a certificate of analysis (COA) is a crucial document to determine the quality of any CBD product? As CBD becomes more and more mainstream, the demand for cannabis-extracted products is growing. The multiple manufacturers offering numerous products have offered CBD users sufficient variety to choose products that best meet their needs and preferences.

However, this has made getting quality products a challenging task that many users find mind-boggling. The COA is a document that can assist you in determining the quality of CBD products you intend to purchase.

All reputable manufacturers and resellers, such as CBDistilleryinclude a COA for their customers. This certificate helps users analyse the quality, potency, and safety of CBD products. Before using the COA effectively, you need to know what COA is and how to read it? Let us jump into it.

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What is a certificate of analysis (COA)?

The COA provides transparency by ensuring the product you intend to purchase boasts potency, quality, and safety values similar to values listed on their labels. It lists the details of cannabinoid profiles, terpenes, and other compounds.

The manufacturers send a sample from each production batch to third-party independent labs for testing; COA testing ensures CBD content in a specific product is as expected and labelled.

Why is certificate of analysis important?

Like other cannabis-extracted products, FDA does not regulate CBD. In the absence of a certificate of analysis FDA, the COA assists users in determining the quality, consistency, and safety of CBD products.

Checking the COA allows you to enjoy the best value for your money, and it enables you to get the maximum from your CBD experience.

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How to read a certificate of analysis?

CBD certificate of analysis comes in a specific format; you need to check multiple values on potency, legality, safety, and consistency. The following lines deliver critical information on COA, and after going through them, you will be able to read and understand the values listed in a COA.

1. Understand the details at the top

At the top of certificate of analysis, you will find the following information.

  • Name of the product, for example CBD oil or edible
  • The company ordered the testing
  • Name of the lab undertaking the test
  • Batch number
  • Date

2. The details at the bottom

The labs undertaking tests need to be accredited to display they conform to standards and have strict internal quality control. Each lab needs to have some form of accreditation to establish trust in their processes and the findings they make. Always check the bottom for certifications, signatures, and badges.

The badges and certificates demonstrate the lab possesses the required competence and gets regular audits.

3. Cannabinoids profile

After making sure the certificate of analysis comes from a trusted lab, you can move on to look at the most crucial parameter of the CBD certificate of analysis testing: cannabinoids profile. Knowing how to read a cannabinoid profile ensures you can make a perfect cannabinoid analysis.

First, look at the THC values that should be under the legal cut-off limit of 0.3 percent; this ensures the product will not make you high.

Once THC concentration is within the compliance range, you can move on to check the CBD content of your product. Spot the value labelled as “Total CBD” that presents the sum of all variations of CBD cannabinoid, and comparing this value to one listed on the label can give you an idea of what to expect from a specific CBD product.

4. Safety profile

The reputable manufacturers get their products tested for pesticides, solvents, microbial, heavy metals, and foreign agents to ensure their products are safe for consumption. The absence of these materials and compounds shows the product is safe and does not involve any health risks.

5. Terpenes profile

Terpenes are natural compounds that give the cannabis plant its aroma and flavour. The products rich in terpenes offer several additional wellness benefits. The COA shows the type and concentration of these compounds present in a CBD product.

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Final thoughts

The COA testing provides a way to ensure CBD oils offered for sale boast high quality, consistency, purity, and safety. Knowing how to read this document can help users understand the values and what they mean. Checking COA before purchasing a CBD-infused product helps users get quality products that may perfectly meet their wellness needs. 

Author’s bio: Michael Levin is a CBD enthusiast, a researcher, writer and editor in the cannabis space, experienced CBD user and educator. He believes CBD can help improve our overall health and wellbeing.

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