A CBD certificate of analysis or COA, is important because it gives information about the CBD extraction methods, which may impact your use experience.

What Is a CBD Certificate of Analysis?

The cannabinoid industry is a $2.7 billion industry and is expected to double by 2028. But who’s regulated this billion-dollar industry? Currently, nobody is which can be troubling to many buyers or interested CBD users. 

If you’re concerned about what’s in the CBD product you’re buying then you need to read the certificate of analysis. Don’t worry if you’re not sure what that is or how to read it because we’ve got you covered. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about the certificate of analysis. 

What Is a Certificate of Analysis? 

The certificate of analysis, or COA, proves to the buyer that the amount of stated CBD on the label is what is actually in the product. The COA is a report run by an accredited laboratory proving the chemical details of every batch of CBD sold. 

The certificate of analysis is crucial to discerning buyers so you know what you’re getting in the product you’re buying. It protects buyers and ensures that manufacturers are transparent and honest when it comes to the product they’re selling. 

Why You Need a COA for Your CBD

Currently, the CBD industry isn’t regulated by any federal agency. When you buy vitamins or other supplements at the store, the labels on these products are regulated by both the Food and Drug Administration as well as the Federal Trade Commission. The FDA makes sure that what is on the labels is accurate.  

However, the CBD industry isn’t currently regulated federally, so many manufacturers pay for a third-party lab to test their product and ensure that it has the stated levels of CBD in its product. You’ll want to make sure that the lab testing the product you buy is tested by a third-party lab and not by the company itself to ensure quality and nonbias. 

Not all certifications are equal, you need to know what you’re looking for when you read the COA. In fact, the first thing you want to pay attention to is the location of the COA.

Honest and transparent sellers and manufacturers will provide their COA prominently on their website. They’re proud of the quality of their product and want to provide that information to their buyers freely. 

Many other manufacturers will provide the information when asked. If a company doesn’t want to share their COA with you, then consider not buying their products.

What to Look For in Your COA

The COA will show not only the purity of the cannabinoids present but also that the product is free from pesticides, herbicides, and heavy metals. This will also prove to you their growing and harvesting methods are up to regulations. 

Once you have the COA the main items you want to pay attention to include: 

  • CBD levels and concentration
  • Terpenes present
  • Lack of herbicides and pesticides
  • The concentration of heavy metal below recommendations
  • Extraction methods

As you can see there is more to the COA than how much CBD is in the product. You want to know if it’s a full spectrum or broad and whether they used hemp CO2 extract or ethanol. Knowing this information will provide you with the peace of mind that the product you’re buying is pure and will have the benefits you want. 

From Buyer Beware to Buyer Aware

The certificate of analysis is important documentation that scrupulous manufacturers and perceptive buyers understand and appreciate. It isn’t meant to be suppressive or controlling. It protects the buyer and ensures that you’re getting the ingredients you want at the level promised. It also ensures there aren’t any harmful substances in the product you’re consuming. 

As a discerning buyer, always look for the COA and be aware of the quality of the product you’re buying. For more great information on this and other topics, check out the rest of our blog. 

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