A COA is a certificate of analysis. Every CBD product there is has to have one. We have them available upon request for every product that we carry. A COA a series of tests done by a 3rd party laboratory hired by the producer. All of our vendors have supplied us with verification that each product has been tested for: THC content to ensure that the product does, in fact, contain less than .3% THC Products are also tested for microbes, heavy metals and pesticides. Most of the products we carry have "QR" codes.
We use the COA to help choose the products we carry. We have sought out products that have the highest configuration of cannabinoids beside CBD and THC. There are several other cannabinoids such as, CBN, CBC, and CBG that are considered "major cannabinoids" that have healing properties. For example, it is believed that CBC is a compound that provides mood elevation or anti-depression. We've dedicated ourselves to buying the highest cannabinoid content products we could find and still be price conscious consumers on our customers' behalf. So if you see products that say things like "sleep" "calm" or "balance" it's because that company has a group of chemists that have studied the available academic research on each cannabinoid.
The metals, microbe and pesticide tests are pretty standard.
Some companies do an extra test for terpenes. Terpenes provide fragrance and found in living plants. These extracts also have medicinal qualities. Things like lemons, pepper, pine needles, all have high concentrations of terpenes. Beta-caryophyllene is believed to reduce pain from inflammation. Humulene may have potential in preventing allergic reactions and asthma. There are dozens of different terpenes. We have gone out of our way to carry products that are high in terpenes.
For example, the 3Chi products that we carry are specifically for first responders who can't take products with THC in them because they would fail a drug test and potentially lose a job or be discharged from the military. The 3Chi products are exceptionally high in terpenes to make up for not having THC in it. They are a little more expensive because of it, but we felt it was worth it to carry a few broad spectrum products with high concentrations of other cannabinoids beside THC and the terpenes. A lot of products don't have that.
"Don't be fooled by fake product.!" Here is how the unscrupulous players in the industry can fool consumers. While there a maximum allowable THC limit of .3% or more, there is no minimum requirement. As we said, many CBD products are made from isolate that don't work very well. However, our research also showed that many, many products on the market are labeled "full spectrum" but don't carry very much THC. There are lots of reasons this could be the case. It could be poor quality hemp. Either the genetic strain produced a plant with low THC or perhaps the soil or environmental factors caused the THC to content to be low. Farmers and chemists in the labs explained these processes in great detail. In the end, we still had to separate the wheat from the chaff by only carrying products with an acceptable level of THC and other cannabinoids. What we consider acceptable is proprietary, subjective, and debatable and sometimes arguable. Some conversations with vendors turned a little nasty when nameless vendors refused to believe we didn't consider their full spectrum products to be full spectrum because the THC was too low. For whatever reason science says, we found the efficacy of high THC hemp products to be better than low or no THC, which is why we have such anti-isolate posture. Many of our competitors carry low or no THC products.
We found that the Pure Hemp Botanicals product is probably our best product for pain. The 3000 milligram tincture or capsule actually has 109.74 milligram of CBD per 100 milligram tablet. Why? First, Mother Nature doesn't allow vendors to hit 100 every time. CBD is an extract from a plant so it's a moving target, that undoubtedly gives the FDA headaches. And upon further investigation, we were told by the vendor they intentionally add a little extra CBD because CBD does have a shelf life. The vendor believed as others do, too, but there are bad apples we had to weed out on your behalf that it would be more honest to put a little extra in so that over the life of the product at the day of stated expiration the product will still have the stated quantity of CBD, in this case 100 milligrams, in the product. That little extra labor of love means a lot to us. We tried to choose vendors that think like that on your behalf. Hint: The sun. CBD breaks down quickly in direct sunlight which is why most bottles of tincture in dark brown, black, or sometimes blue bottles. Clear bottles, like WATER, are going to have very little CBD in them especially if the vendor puts them in the sunlight or on shelves where there are lights. By highlighting the products they are destroying the cannabinoids in the container. If tested, these products would unlikely have the proper amount of CBD. Hence, our store is a little on the dark side.
The Vermont Pure product we carry have the highest legal THC content of any products in the store. Those products are for consumers looking for a little extra THC but still within the legal limit.
The reason we don't put the COA's up on the web site is we concluded that it may do more harm than good because of the complexity of explaining cannabinoids and terpenes. We spent a year reading 1,000 of them before we started to see patterns that we recognize. Huh?
In theory, we could be very scientific and pick products to carry based on the cannabinoid and terpene configuration.
That's not good enough.
We tried dozens of companies' products. With the exception of some of the beauty products we carry, we insisted that each product worked to the maximum effect. In other words, the feeling had to live up to match the COA. Again, it's a little subjective, but we chose products to the best of our ability and certainly denied carrying 10 others behind it.