CBD is increasing in popularity in the UK. While this is fantastic news for the industry, and for all the people who have seen their lives improved by CBD (as we have heard from numerous personal accounts and anecdotal evidence), it also comes with risks.
There is the potential that some companies will try to piggyback on a popular trend with low-quality or even potentially dangerous products that don’t contain the ingredients they advertise. We look at why it’s vital to know what’s in your CBD and how you can find out the contents of a particular product.
Why is it important to know what’s in your CBD?
With all supplements, you should always read the label carefully so that you know exactly what you are putting into your body. This is even more important with CBD, which is a relatively new and growing marketplace, in the early stages of regulation.
We are pleased that the UK CBD industry is tightening up and the novel foods application process is now required by the Food Standards Agency. This will hopefully lead to a higher-quality marketplace where consumers can shop with confidence.
In the meantime, you should still be careful when shopping for CBD products to make sure you are buying those that are truly high-quality and safe. The most reputable brands in the industry will be transparent about their products, and the best online shops and marketplaces will make sure that their customers have all the information they need to make an informed decision.
As well as ensuring quality and safety, you will also want to know what is in your CBD product because it may have additional ingredients that are appealing to you. For example, Grass & Co. CBD oils contain a range of therapeutic botanical ingredients which also enhance the flavour.
How do you find out what is in a CBD product?
Perhaps the easiest way to understand what is in your CBD product is to look at the lab report. All CBD products should be independently tested in a laboratory and these results should be available to the consumer in the form of a Certificate of Analysis (COA).
A COA provides CBD companies (and their customers) with a direct record of the makeup of their products, including cannabinoids, terpenes and more. They can also verify that the product contains little to no contaminants, including heavy metals, mould, pesticides and solvent residue. In some cases, lab reports may even be provided for other ingredients in a CBD product, like carrier oils.
We would always recommend viewing a lab report before you buy a CBD product as it lets you know exactly what you are consuming. It will help you to differentiate between a high-quality and low-quality product and keep you safe.
The ingredients and key information for a CBD product should also be clearly listed on websites you can buy it from and on the packaging. This will allow you to see the strength of the product, indicated by the CBD content, as well as whether it is broad-spectrum, full-spectrum or isolate (which is an indication of whether it also contains terpenes and THC).
How is CBD regulated in the UK?
As we mentioned briefly earlier, the regulation of CBD in the UK is currently a grey area but this won’t be the case for much longer. CBD brands now need to apply for novel foods approval by 31st March 2021 in order to remain on the market.
Before that date (and even after), you should make sure to do your research when shopping for CBD! Always check the lab reports and ingredients lists and you can also look at existing reviews to see how other customers have found the products.
This article was written by James Storie-Pugh, the co-founder of mellow store, the UK’s curated CBD marketplace which stocks high-quality CBD brands including Grass & Co.