Transparency: The next generation

Consumers would rather see “third-party tested” than “we test our own ingredients” on a CBD label.

Elan Sudberg, CEO

September 10, 2019

1 Min Read
Hemp CBD needs ingredient testing and validation at every step.jpg

I challenge the dietary supplement industry to follow the forward-thinking practices of the cannabis industry. Yes, the Wild Wild West of cannabis—which is stricter about testing than the broader dietary supplement industry, especially in California. California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) requires independent testing of all cannabis materials brought to market by BCC-certified testing labs following BCC-approved methods. The results go directly to the BCC, which then approves the release of the vetted product for sale to the public.

Because of this oversight, brands in this space are quick to use these regulatory hoops they have gone through as marketing gold. Cannabis brands proudly brag about their labs, share the data, and go further to tell the story about their farms and manufacturing processes. It’s the reverse of the dietary supplements space, where brands have become more forthcoming about their sourcing and manufacturing but are still vague about ingredient and finished product testing.

Supplement companies spend valuable marketing dollars telling their quality story. They also spend money on ingredient and finished product testing to ensure identity and potency, but the only people who know about that are internal quality assurance (QA)/quality control (QC) teams and auditors.

Consumers would love to see the details of supplement testing results and analytical report details. Alkemist Labs is so convinced of this that it has developed a template for a consumer-friendly certificate of analysis (CoA) suitable for disclosing because it explains what was tested and what the tests found in plain language.

The goal is for this to become industry standard practice.

Elan Sudberg is the CEO of Alkemist Labs.

The full version of this article appears in the digital magazine "CBD: The certified business of disruption."

About the Author(s)

Elan Sudberg

CEO, Alkemist Labs

Élan M. Sudberg is CEO of Alkemist Labs, a passionately committed contract testing laboratory specializing in plant and fungal identity, potency and purity testing for the food, beverage, nutraceutical and psychedelic industries. His favorite part of his job is catching cheaters, and he is known for pushing the industry to continually raise the bar on quality and transparency. Élan holds a degree in chemistry from California State University Long Beach, and he is on the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) board of trustees.

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