Purchasing something new to us is a task most consumers don’t take lightly. Whether it’s asking friends, social media connections, or doing plenty of Google-ing, we tend to crowd source information to help us make informed decisions. This is especially true when it comes to products that impact our health in some way. But when it comes to CBD, how do you know you’re getting what the label claims? How do you know if a company, or product, is reliable and safe? We’re going to give you the rundown of what to look for when buying CBD, and how to spot red flags that may lead to a less-than-satisfactory investment.
How Prevalent Are Fake CBD Products?
A study conducted by SC Laboratories and the United Cannabis Business Association (UCBA) included 17 samples purchased from unlicensed CBD shops or retailers in and around the Los Angeles area. These samples, when tested, came back quite shocking.
More than 70% of the samples failed the testing for either excessive contamination or not qualifying as hemp, which is the main ingredient in CBD.
42% of the samples failed safety testing compared with the roughly 1.5% of samples tested from the regulated market that fail for containments.
In some cases, the level of contamination was at times, several hundred times higher than the allowable limits.
A majority of the products tested contained THC levels high enough to cause serious psychoactive effects.
Fake CBD has been known to cause physical and mental ailments ranging from elevated heartbeat and paranoia to chest pains, seizures, and vomiting. CBD isn’t right for everyone, which is why we recommend consulting with a physician prior to using CBD, in addition to following dosage instructions listed on specific products. You can always take more, but you can not take less. Start out slow and easy to minimize any potential negative side effects.
🚩🚩 CBD Red Flags 🚩🚩
Every trustworthy CBD company, or company in general that works in similar industries, should have easily-accessible information regarding their products. In this case, that’s a third-party certificate of analysis, or COA. COA’s will be able to show you how that product performed in screenings for CBD, THC, and other contaminants. It also should include a batch number used to refer to that product and it’s manufacturing information, as well as the CBD and THC levels. Lastly, is the certification indicating that heavy metals, pesticides, and solvent residues found in the product fall within the range of allowable limits set by individual states. Without a COA, or with an outdated one, that product should be scrutinized prior to using.
Ethical, honest CBD companies and professionals will never promise their product will cure whatever is ailing you. If you’re looking at a CBD tincture that claims in it’s verbiage to “cure” something, put it back down and walk away. “In fact, making health claims is only legal for prescription drugs and is strictly forbidden by the FDA and the Federal Trade Commission when it comes to supplements like CBD products,” says Aaron Riley, CEO of CannaSafe, in an online article found here.
Every CBD product should include numerous important details, one of the most important being the amount per serving. This shouldn’t be confused for the amount per packaging (ie bottle, jar, etc). The vagueness of dosages on a product is a huge red flag, as this leaves room for questionable contents within the products or unsafe use due to missing information.
“You get what you pay for” isn’t just something our family says matter-of-factly when criticising you about the quality of furniture in your home. There’s truth to that statement when it comes to plenty of things, and CBD products are no exception. While you also should avoid overpaying for CBD, buying cheap CBD is more likely to lead to problems bigger than a disappointing purchase.
What’s the average cost of CBD products? CBD has a pretty wide range when it comes to cost technically speaking. Anywhere from $0.04 per mg to over $3.00 per mg. There are numerous things that contribute to the cost of CBD such as the source used by the company for their hemp, the extraction method used, potency, formula, and third-party testing.
Below is the breakdown of costs for other CBD products.
- CBD oil drops average $0.09-$0.17, with the low end being $0.05 per mg and premium oils retailing at $20 per mg.
- CBD capsules average $0.09-$0.13 per mg.
- CBD gummies average $0.09-$0.20 per mg.
- CBD topicals average $0.07-$0.19 per mg, with prices going up as high as $0.36 per mg.
CBD is supposed to be healthy, right? So why would you buy CBD with lackluster ingredients, or unnecessary preservatives and sweeteners? Read the ingredients list closely, and make sure what you’re reading belongs in the product and isn’t harmful.
Buying CBD directly from the manufacturer online, or at a place like GNC or other health and wellness retailers, is your best bet. But buying CBD from the gas station down the block or other businesses that don’t specialize in those products is a risk.
It’s also a good idea to do your research on brands before buying. Visit their website, read product reviews, and check comments on social media. People are quick to turn to their keyboards to share a bad experience with a company or product. While not every single person will always be satisfied with a business or product, there’s a line between a red flag and just a few fluke experiences/errors that the company attempted to resolve in good faith. If you start to see a negative trend in reviews or comments, proceed with caution.
How Do I Avoid Buying Fake CBD Products?
So now that we see how prevalent the problem is, and the very inconvenient, sometimes dangerous side effects from ingesting fake products, let’s talk about how to avoid faux CBD products.
- Use retailers that specialize in CBD or health and wellness.
- Read reviews for each product and company prior to purchasing.
- Talk with a trusted medical professional.
- Read the labels and product description prior to purchasing.
The world of CBD can be overwhelming, we know. Between it’s variations (CBDA, Delta-8, etc), multiple methods of application and ingestion, popularity and overflowing marketplace, and composition. . . It can feel like finding a needle in a haystack. But don’t sweat. We got you.
Part of our commitment to our products at Uncle Yogi’s is to actually help you during your research and during your journey with CBD. We want to give you the resources, answer your questions, and give you a selection of products that we don’t just sell, but use ourselves. This business comes from personal experiences that left us wanting to provide people with alternatives to live better, healthier lives. And we’re here to help you every step of the way.