Surprisingly to many, there’s no such thing as ‘certified CBD’. In this article we’re going to explore why this term doesn’t really work for the complex and diverse industry that CBD has rapidly become, what the alternatives are, and how to establish these if any CBD manufacturer meets the standards you require.
In a previous article we unpicked the difference between pharmaceutical CBD, dietary supplement CBD and recreational products such as flavoured vapes.* Here we’re looking at what defines excellence in CBD manufacture and how retailers, pharmaceutical researchers and product creators requiring bulk CBD for incorporation into their own products, can establish the credentials of CBD manufacturers worldwide.
The first thing to understand is that the CBD industry has grown fast, in many places and in a largely unregulated fashion when it comes to issues like food safety and quality assurance. Why?
- Because there are no internationally overarching standards to which CBD manufacturers are required to adhere, companies are free to pick and choose their own, or not choose any at all
- Because each country tends to have its own food, medicinal and cosmetic regulations, manufacturers are constrained by local requirements as much as anything else
- Because there are ways to work around effective certification by using standards that aren’t appropriate or claiming standards that you don’t actually possess.
We’re not here to run scare stories, there are plenty of those out in the world already.** However, we do want to talk about effective certification. Effective certification matters because:
- It provides accountability for the raw product, the processes used in refining it, the supply chain and the reliability of the final product
- It allows consumers to form reliable value judgements about the quality, purity and nature of the goods they are purchasing
- It delivers are framework on which people can compare like-for-like in terms of product efficacy, strength and standards in the CBD marketplace.
The place to start is by exploring which standards and certifications and company adheres to. Candropharm has already attained a range of ISO standards.
Quality Management ISO9001:2015 – the benchmark for quality management. This standard allows for assurance about product quality and sets a baseline for continuous improvement of quality.
Food Safety ISO22000:2018 – an internationally recognised food safety standard, based on Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles. This allows an organisation to recognise all its critical control points, define risks related to food safety and put in place necessary preventative measures to protect against risk.
Medical Devices ISO13485:2016 – the gold standard for medical devices, used worldwide and focusing on issues that are specifically significant for the creation of medical devices. These issues include hygiene and sterility, traceability, risk analysis and efficacious warning or recall systems.
Cosmetics ISO 22716:2007 – this standard is significant because it contains the guidelines on Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) relating to the production, control, storage and shipment of cosmetic products.
The implementation of these standards ensures that Candropharm is operating at the highest possible levels of safety, efficiency and accountability. In line with ISO requirements, Candropharm’s policy documents on all these standards are available on request.
Above and beyond the ISO standards is full GMP compliance. This is a European legislative instrument that is an over-arching process related to Good Manufacturing Process. Candropharm has just received the GMP certification following the GMP guidelines through ISO 22716:2007. GMP Certification demonstrates the highest possible levels of quality and procedures. It relates to health, sanitation, risk and reporting amongst other areas.
While CBD safety, regulation and compliance is currently an ad hoc affair, with each company taking its own route to certification, there will eventually be supra-national regulations and those companies who aren’t working at the highest standards will be de-regulated or penalised for poor performance. Some of the less ethical routes currently being used to bolster an organisation’s profile include claiming GMP certification through third party audit organisations that aren’t registered to issue GMP rulings and moving into manufacturing plants that have previously been GMP certified and claiming that prior GMP as their own, which is does not qualify. The specific manufacturing processes of each individual company have to be tested against GMP standards for certification to be issued. There may be no certified CBD, but there is definitely such a thing as a certified CBD manufacturer!
So we can see that CBD GMP is a vital component in building confidence in a manufacturer. As a European leader in CBD production, with a wide range of innovative products, we believe that the highest possible standards are pharmaceutical quality cannabinoids, produced under GMP guidelines, with transparency and external verification.
Which brings us to our final point. There should never be a requirement to believe what your CBD manufacturer tells you, rather, you should be believing what an external body with a high reputation is telling you about your CBD manufacturer! This is why Candropharm is partnered with Bright Labs, the same organisation that tests the import and export of medical cannabis for Bureau Medicinale Cannabis, the Dutch government agency that deals with medical cannabis. Working with a world leader in cannabis testing means that Candropharm is held to the highest possible standards – and that gives our customers the absolute confidence that they are working with a company that they can trust.
WELCOME TO CANDROPHARM
Our ambition is to deliver safe, high quality products, produced to the highest standards, including: ISO9001:2015, ISO22000, ISO13485, GDP and GMP guidelines. We aim to meet, and exceed, the highest quality standards in the EU.
WHAT WE DO TODAY
We already ship to over forty countries worldwide, and we’re a leader and pioneer of the rapidly growing phytocannabinoid market.
HOW WE ACHIEVE OUR MISSIONCandropharm constantly reinvests substantially in quality control, research and process improvement to guarantee consistent product production.We undertake extensive testing throughout the vertical column, from seed to final product. This success is driven by a team of highly trained and skilled professionals who thrive in our informal, customer-oriented culture. Our broad customer base forms the starting point for every aspect of our activity. Their needs, ideas and aspirations inform each partnership, ensuring we work together in an atmosphere of confidence, clear communication and fulfilled expectations
* link to Candropharm Medical Cannabis Products article here