I-Team: We tested CBD products at a lab, and got alarming results

I-Team

EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – With promises of treating everything from epilepsy and fibromyalgia to insomnia and migraines, CBD has been dubbed a “miracle drug.”

CBD infused products can be purchased pretty much anywhere.

Over-the-counter CBD products aren’t regulated by the FDA, which made the 22News I-Team wonder; do you really know what you’re getting? 

The 22News I-Team purchased 3 different CBD products from convenience stores in western Massachusetts, a tincture, a drink and a package of gummies.

We then brought these products to ProVerde Laboratories in Milford, to find out what’s lurking behind the labels.

Chris Hudalla is the lab’s co-founder and has been testing hemp and marijuana products for years.

“We test for many producers and many consumers who are buying CBD products, and are concerned they’re not getting what they’re paying for.” 

CBD Test Results:

Tincture $45

  • The label claimed there was 250 mg of CBD in the oil.
  • Chris Hudalla told the 22News I-Team there was far less than that.
  • “We found there was 142 mg in the bottle. There was a 43% shortage in what the consumer paid for but didn’t get.”

CBD Drink $17

  • The drink advertised was 75 mg of CBD.
  • The lab results from ProVerde found only 17 mg, a 77% shortage.

Gummy Worms $13

  • The gummies advertised 500 mg of CBD, but that wasn’t even close.
  • “We found no detected CBD, literally nothing. So these were probably the most expensive gummy worms ever bought.”

Chris Hudalla told the 22News I-Team, the test results we saw weren’t unusual, in fact, it happens quite often. He said they’ve even found toxic chemicals in over-the-counter CBD products, ranging from paint thinner to pesticides. “In addition to not getting your CBD, you’re getting other things you didn’t pay for, nor do you want.”

The 22News I-Team took our lab results to Mark Zatyrka, the CEO of INSA in Easthampton, to see what the price of the products we purchased should have been.

Tincture

The tincture cost the 22News I-Team $45, but Zatyrka said based off of the CBD the lab detected, it should have cost far less.

“That would probably be about $5 worth of product.” 

He also pointed out that for CBD to work, you need to have a lot of it. “The fact that there’s a little, or none at all in those products, it’s very unlikely you’ll any relief from those products at all.”

In Massachusetts, recreational and marijuana dispensaries like INSA have to get their products tested by the state. You can tell a product has been tested, because it’ll have a label on it that comes directly from a state certified lab.

Mark Zatyrka told the 22News I-Team the only way to get a credible product, is to purchase it from a credible seller. “It’s such a new market, it’s nearly impossible for anyone who’s new to CBD or new to cannabis to know which brands are good and which brands aren’t.” 

Chris Hudalla said our investigation should be a red flag for CBD users everywhere.

“It is a little bit of a buyer beware.”

His recommendation?  If you’re not buying your CBD from a state certified marijuana dispensary, you need to do your research.

Make sure the company you’re purchasing from has a legitimate website, then call the company to ask which lab tests their products. If their products are not tested, that may be a warning sign.

If the company can produce test results, request a copy, then call the lab to verify. “At this point, it gets more complicated, because there are so many people who are fraudulently preparing reports, you actually have to call the lab, and ask them whether the results on the report are legitimate.” 

The 22News I-Team contacted the 3 companies
we purchased our products

Hemp Bombs

  • Never got back to us.
  • The only way to contact this company was through a message option on their website. We sent them more than one message but never heard back.

Illuminati CBD

  • Never got back to us.
  • No phone number on their website, but we messaged their Facebook page and emailed their sales team.

Green Roads

  • The only company that did get back to us, and they disputed our results. 
  • They offered to send us their newer products to test to prove it.

Spokesperson Bonnie Kaye told the 22News I-Team, the tincture we tested was an old product, that was tested by their labs before the implementation of their new “per batch” testing protocol, which has been in place since last summer. 

A statement provided by Green Roads:
 

“We at Green Roads are dedicated to improving lives… and thus we are seriously committed to product quality and purity.  We have been a CBD product industry pioneer in self-regulation, consumer education and transparency; have championed for industry regulation and standardization and were one of the first CBD companies to invest in the independent third-party lab testing of products.

Our Green Roads Co-Founder and CEO Laura Baldwin Fuentes is a Licensed Pharmacist who requires the independent lab-testing of both our raw materials and finished products.  Last summer – at great expense to the company – she switched from quarterly testing of our products, to a “per batch” lab testing protocol by an accredited third-party lab that validates the results.  Those lab sheets are then made accessible to consumers via QR codes on its product packaging.

In addition, our 250mg Oil is a suspension product (not just oil and isolate) and therefore, according to our lab, requires a different testing protocol for accurate findings.  We had to work with our lab over many trials to develop a specific protocol for these suspension products so that the lab could ensure accurate findings.  We did not discuss with ProVerde what its methodology was.

ProVerde Laboratories, Inc. reports that it only found 10mg/ml of CBD in one of our products instead of the 17mg/ml promised on the label. Since ProVerde Laboratories, Inc. was unable to find a batch number printed on the box or bottle of the product tested, it was most likely an old product made before we began our rigorous “per batch” independent lab testing or could have been compromised while sitting on the shelf.  Without a batch number it is impossible for us to compare ProVerde Laboratories results with our independent lab results to determine if its findings are accurate or to work with them to investigate the matter further.”

GREEN ROADS

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