Although you can seemingly see CBD for sale everywhere, don’t assume that all CBD products online are the same. In fact, there is quite a disparity in the quality of what’s on the market.
One reason is that it is a fledgling industry. It is already a market with an enormous amount of potential. As a result, it appears as if everyone is getting in on it. This means that a significant percentage of manufacturers produce mediocre to low-standard products.
The other big issue is a lack of regulation. CBD isn’t yet legal on a federal level, which means a lack of government oversight. Consequently, state and even local governments have a say in how to manage the CBD industry. Some states, such as Florida, take this responsibility seriously. Others have a laissez-faire attitude, which culminates in a Wild West-style environment.
People living in these areas are taking a major risk by choosing CBD products without lab reports. Without a Certificate of Analysis (COA), you don’t know what is in your CBD oil or edibles. The CBD you see for sale could include pesticides, herbicides, or heavy metals. At least with COAs from reputable labs, you can see whether a CBD product has tested for anything untoward.
A Question of Labelling
The lack of market regulation has caused reputational harm to the CBD industry. It enables companies to sell CBD products of extremely low-quality. One study, published in Pediatric Neurology Briefs in 2018, led with the title: Inadequate Regulation Contributes to Mislabeled Online Cannabidiol Products.
Researchers analyzed 84 CBD products they purchased online. They found that almost 70% of them were mislabeled and included a different level of CBD from what the label claims. Over 40% of CBD products had more cannabidiol than advertised, while 26% contained less. Worryingly, over one-fifth of the items had detectable THC levels, cannabis’ most famous intoxicating compound.
The hope was that the industry could clean up its act in the last few years. A preliminary study by the FDA in 2020 dashed this dream. According to the report, almost a quarter of the food products it tested didn’t meet the label’s claims.
The FDA randomly tested around 200 oils, tinctures, edibles, and other CBD products. Of the 20 food and drink products with labels, five had below 80% of the CBD claimed by the label. Six others had 20% more than advertised. Eight of the food products had detectable levels of THC.
Over in the United Kingdom, the Centre of Medicinal Cannabis tested 30 commercially available products. Less than 40% of the products were within 10% of the claimed CBD level on the label.
What Are the Risks of Mislabeling CBD Products?
In general, CBD for sale should have a low risk of side effects. The World Health Organization (WHO) suggests that CBD has a good risk profile. However, even high-quality CBD products can cause mild side effects. These can include fatigue, reduced appetite, and drowsiness.
In general, the adverse effects associated with CBD are mild. It is a different story with mislabeled or unlabeled products, however.
One of the big issues is the THC content of certain CBD products. Again, cannabidiol itself isn’t federally legal. However, most locations allow CBD use if products containing it have a maximum of 0.3% THC. There are too many examples of CBD for sale with detectable THC levels for comfort.
As well as technically breaking the law, it is also possible for consumers to fail drug screenings at work. If a CBD product contains a THC level detectable in a screening, the user could fail the test. This could result in disciplinary action or even termination of their contract.
If there is an excessive THC level, the user could experience adverse effects like increased anxiety or paranoia. They could become unexpectedly intoxicated. This is a real problem at work or if they drive. It is possible to get arrested and charged for DUI when under the influence of THC.
Final Thoughts on the Risks of CBD Products
The answer to the title question is ‘no,’ but ONLY when referring to CBD products without lab testing or COAs. Cannabidiol itself typically only produces mild side effects, and they occur relatively rarely.
The big risk comes from buying CBD that doesn’t have a third-party lab report. You need this documentation to determine the product’s CBD and THC levels. It also shows you whether there are any pesticides, insecticides, or other harmful materials inside.
It is imperative that you only seek CBD for sale from a reputable brand such as PureKana. Widely regarded as an industry leader, PureKana includes third-party lab reports with every batch. Visit the website to see for yourself. You will also find an impressive array of CBD products.