Cannabinoids are the class of compounds commonly associated with the psychoactive effects and medicinal benefits of cannabis, and are produced by the glandular trichomes on the surface of the cannabis plant. Cannabinoids are biosynthesized in the acidic (ie. carboxylated) form and mainly exist in the plant in this “non-activated” form. However, the carboxyl group is volatile, and upon combustion (ie. smoking, vaporizing, and cooking), and to a lesser extent, exposure to light or heat during harvest and storage, converts to the corresponding “activated” neutral counterpart. The scientific community has isolated over 80+ cannabinoids from various strains of cannabis, however, many of those identified are breakdown products and artifacts.
3B Analytical employs sophisticated UPLC-DAD technology to perform cannabinoid profile screenings. Currently, our test screens for the five major cannabinoids: THCa, THC, CBD, CBDa, and CBN (reference standards are presently unavailable for CBG, precluding its addition to our assay). These constituents are typically present in the cannabis plant in the highest concentrations, and are most commonly associated with psychoactive and pharmacological effects of cannabis.
For good or bad, pesticide use in the agricultural industry is ubiquitous. In cannabis cultivation specifically, pesticides, both organic and non-organic, are commonly used as a tool to manage disease and infestations. However, there is a dearth of federal guidelines on the subject of pesticides and cannabis: there exists no registered pesticides or application limits. To help mitigate this problem, the Oregon Department of Agriculture has released a pesticide guidance list, to aid growers in distinguishing permissible products from those definitively not-allowed.
Oregon state law mandates the testing of cannabis for a panel of over 100 analytes. Click here for the list of Pesticide Analytes and Action Limits
The complex matrix of cannabis, with all of its cannabinoid and terpenoid constituents, makes pesticide detection a uniquely challenging enterprise. Utilizing a combination of GC and LC-QQQ instrumentation, 3B Analytical surmounts this challenge, ensuring the reliable detection of prohibited pesticide residues and your compliance with state law.
Microorganisms, such as bacteria and mold, are ubiquitous in plant products. Although most mold and mildew contaminating cannabis are not infectious, certain microbes such as Aspergillus spp., can be transmitted via inhalation and pose a heightened risk of infection.
At 3B Analytical, we use established methodologies in combination with advanced technology to provide our customers with reliable mold and mildew plate counts in as little as 48 hours. Our mold and mildew screening is fully compliant with HB 3460. In accordance with HB 3460, a sample of medical marijuana shall be deemed positive when it exceeds 10,000 CFU/g. We also offer aerobic plate counts (APC) if your medical marijuana needs require a quantitative enumeration of aerobic bacteria. Having this extra test done is good practice if the product is intended for immunocompromised individuals (e.g. the aged, HIV-infected, and those receiving chemotherapy treatments). Aerobic plate count screenings are also highly recommended for all edibles.
Visual inspections alone are not compliant with current HB 3460 regulations. Be careful when choosing a cannabis lab for your microbial analysis. You could be waiting a week for your results, or worse, you may be putting yourself and patients at risk by not having your medical marijuana tested at a laboratory that does a proper microbial analysis.
Cannabis Inflorescence, American Herbal Pharmacopoeia Monograph, Dec 2013