CBD is now 100% legal in all 50 states, but this incredible hemp compound is still largely unregulated, leaving consumers vulnerable to fraudulent venders. Learn about the dangers and risks of CBD scams online and how to find quality CBD products that you can trust.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the primary active chemicals in the hemp. Its properties are being studied for health benefits in a wide range of diseases and disorders.In December 2018, the US officially legalized hemp at the federal level after nearly a century of being banned due to its association with marijuana.
But just because its legal doesn’t mean that there aren’t risks. The CBD hemp industry is still largely unregulated. That leaves plenty of space for scammers, fraudsters, misleading health claims, and flat out fake CBD products.
CBD products such as CBD oil, tinctures, vape oils, gummies, capsules, topicals, and others are made with hemp extract. Hemp extract is made from concentrated oil of the cannabinoid-rich resins found in mature hemp flowers.
To make CBD consumer products, manufacturers and wholesalers either buy hemp extract or produce it themselves.
Then the raw extract is diluted to produce various potencies and combined with other oils or additives to make different forms and consistencies of CBD oil.With little regulations in place to protect consumers the CBD industry has become packed with scams, false advertising, and mislabeled ingredients and potencies.
Penn State Study Shows 2 out of 3 CBD products Inaccurately Labeled
A 2017 Penn State study recently revealed astonishing inaccuracies in CBD product labels. The study analyzed eight-four CBD uniquely formulated products from thirty-one different companies operating online.
Only 1 out of 3, or 30.95% were accurately labeled with CBD content, expressed in milligrams per milliliters. On average, 42% contained less CBD than indicated by the label, and 26% contained more CBD than indicated.
Out of all the products examined, the average CBD content on the label was 15mg/ml, but the study showed that the average actual CBD content was about 9.5mg/ml.
The study also detected THC, the main psychoactive component in cannabis, at up to 6.4mg/ml in about 21% of the products tested. The most accurately labeled CBD products were oils and the most inaccurate labels were found among vape oils.
How To Verify CBD oil Potency & Quality
The only way to verify the cannabinoid content of a CBD product is to have it chemically analyzed or tested in a laboratory.
Often called lab results, this type of analysis will also reveal the presence of secondary cannabinoids and other beneficial hemp compounds like terpenes and flavonoids.
Testing is done at multiple stages during the hemp extraction process, but the most important test results for you, the consumer, are the results for the actual CBD product, not the raw extract used to make it.
Always make sure to ask for and check the lab results of any CBD product you’re interested in buying. If the retailer doesn’t have them or gives you questionable documents, that should be your first red flag.
Here’s what you should look for in terms of test results for CBD products sold online and in dispensaries.
- 3rd party lab results – Make sure the test results come from a reputable third party lab and not the manufacturer. The verified tests available, the better.
- Date and Product Tested – Make sure the lab results are relevant to the product you’re interested. Also, check the date of the test results. Testing is expensive and lab results have expirations. It’s normal for tests to be a bit out of date, but each new batch of product should be tested.
- Cannabinoid Content – Chemical analysis should check for CBD and THC content, and most will also check for other cannabis compounds like CBG, CBN, and terpenes. The CBD content listed on the analysis should match that which is listed on the product’s label. For example, 10mg/ml CBD.
- THC Content – If concerned about consuming THC for whatever reason, the lab results can be used to verify that a CBD product is free from THC.
- Contaminant-Free – Make sure that the CBD product has been tested to be free from any pesticides, chemical residues, or other potential toxins such as mold, fungus, and heavy metals absorbed from the soil.
Quality CBD Hemp Oil Traits
It goes without saying that a quality CBD product should first pass all the requirements of the lab results listed above.
Once it’s established that a CBD product is accurately labeled and free from any contaminants or toxins, you can move on to identifying quality CBD products.
High-quality CBD extract is rich in secondary cannabinoids and aromatic compounds called terpenes. Their presence activates what’s known as the entourage effect, an exponential boost in the health benefits of CBD’s properties.
CBD products that contain all of the compounds naturally found in the hemp plant are known as “full spectrum CBD hemp oil” products. While everyone responds uniquely to CBD, studies show that full spectrum CBD extract can provide more effective results.
CBD products that don’t contain THC are known as ‘broad spectrum CBD”. Other products are crafted from CBD isolate, which is pure CBD. You can learn more about the differences in cannabinoid spectrum and hemp products in our article linked here.
Hemp can grow almost anywhere in the world, but the best extracts come only from CBD-rich resin, which can only be found in mature female hemp flowers.
Always check with the retailer about the source of a brand or product’s hemp extract. The most ideal source for high-quality CBD products is organically cultivated non-GMO Hemp grown in the USA.
Hemp Oil vs. CBD oil
Since the hemp industry is just beginning anew in the US, the terms used to name different products that can be made from the hemp plant are still somewhat unfamiliar to most consumers.
This has created an open space for misleading marketers and false advertisers to take advantage of consumer vulnerability.
An Internet search reveals countless retailers selling Hemp Oil or Hemp Seed Oil with the claims of CBD’s properties such as anti-inflammation and pain relief.
Yet, when you examine these product’s ingredients closer it’s revealed they don’t contain any CBD. Hemp oil does contain omega fatty acids that are beneficial for hair, skin, and wellness. Hemp oil can also be used as base oil for CBD hemp extract.
However, hemp oil without CBD or other beneficial cannabinoids won’t have the same therapeutic potential as CBD-rich oils.
Hemp oil and Hemp Seed Oil (not CBD oil) are made from the extracted oils of the stalks and seeds of the hemp plant. The beneficial compounds like CBD are found primarily in the mature flowers, not in the seeds or stocks.
Don’t be fooled into buying Hemp Oils claiming to have the properties of CBD.
Always check the ingredients. Hemp extract or cannabis sativa extract, and cannabidiol are terms typically used to indicate CBD hemp extract as an ingredient.
Read this article to learn more about the benefits of Hemp Oil.
CBD Vape-Oil Additives
Potentially one of the biggest risks in the CBD hemp industry is that posed by dangerous chemical additives in CBD vape oils. Thinning agents and other chemicals are used to make the thick extract vaporize more easily.
Chemicals like polyethylene glycol (PEG) are used as thinning agents, which can contain harmful ethylene oxide. Propylene glycol (PG), a common food and polymer additive, is another chemical thinning agent commonly used in CBD hemp vape oils.
The FDA recognizes both PEG and PG as “generally safe for human consumption”, but we know very little about the effects of inhaling these chemical vapors.
An alarming 2010 study shows that inhaling PG can make asthma and allergies worse. Now, several studies have confirmed that, at high temperatures, PG and PEG break down into the carcinogens acetaldehyde and formaldehyde.
Other additive risks associated with CBD vape oils comes from synthetic and foreign source terpenes. Terpenes are aromatic compounds found throughout nature.
In hemp, terpenes serve many biological purposes and give the resinous flowers their characteristic aromas and flavors. Terpenes have their own therapeutic properties and can improve the benefits experienced with CBD.
However, some manufacturers use synthetic terpenes or terpenes from bulk industrial sources that are typically reserved for cleaning products and other uses.
CBD oil producers using foreign source terpenes often have overly fruity tastes that some have described as “leaving a strange coating in the mouth and throat”.
The highest quality CBD vape oils contain hemp-derived terpenes found in the plant’s naturally occurring profile.
Brands are exploring other thinning agents such as MCT oils or vegetable glycerin as safer alternatives, but the truth is we just don’t know enough about the risks of vaping these compounds.
The safest bet when it comes to CBD vape oils is to use oils containing CBD-rich hemp extract, hemp derived terpenes, which have been produced by supercritical CO2 extraction.
Toxic Terpene Transformation in Dabbing
Thinking of trying CBD dabs to avoid the risk of vape oil additives? A dab, or dabbing, involves putting CBD hemp extract onto a hot “dab nail” and inhaling the sublimated vapor.
While CBD is a non-toxic substance and is considered very safe, there are unseen risks that come from vaping terpenes at such high temperatures.
A recent 2017 study showed that, at high temperatures, the aromatic compounds known as terpenes, such as Myrcene, undergo a toxic transformation into carcinogenic chemicals including methacrolein, benzene, and other toxins.
The researchers experimented with a 40mg dab of oil that contained roughly 6% Myrcene content and found harmful levels of methacrolein being produced at as low as 403 degrees Celsius.
Many argue about “ideal dabbing temperatures”, suggesting to only dab below 380 degrees Celsius. But, without the assistance of a thermometer or other temperature-regulating device, most consumers won’t have any clue what temperature they are dabbing at.
Electric dab rigs or “e-nails” are available that can control the temperature at which extract is being heated. Dabbing has many advantages such as being an efficient means of taking high potency CBD dosages, but using a blowtorch to heat a nail to uncertain temperatures is a bit risky.
Consider using an e-nail with temperature control and only consume high-quality CBD extracts free from pesticides or chemical residues.
CBD Scam Alert 2019
As you can tell, just because Hemp has been legalized at the federal level doesn’t mean that regulated to protect consumer safety.
I know it sounds like it might be kind of hit or miss when it comes to buying CBD online, and it is, but if you use this info you’ll be able to easily navigate your way through the scams.
Make sure you bookmark The CBD Hemp Temple site so that you’re always just a click away from the latest industry updates. Sign up for our monthly newsletter and get your own free CBD Guide E-book.
CBD Hemp Temple takes time to find only the highest quality sources of CBD hemp extract from producers that only go above and beyond to meet our criteria.
We have years of hands-on experience and knowledge working in the Hemp Industry. We know what makes quality CBD products and what risks you should know about that others won’t tell you.
We’re happy to use our extensive knowledge of CBD hemp and cannabis science to help consumers make wise decisions about what types of CBD Hemp products may be most effective for them.
In fact, that’s why we built the CBD Hemp Temple, to help and to serve.
We don’t have all the answers about healing science, but we are confident that our knowledge and experience in every aspect of CBD Hemp is a valuable resource for anyone hoping to experience this miraculous plant’s benefits.
Check out our selection of Full Spectrum CBD Hemp Oil products in our shop linked here and thanks for reading!
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