Israel: New Leafreport Research Reveals More Than Half of Hemp-Derived Products Tested Had Illegal Levels of Delta-9 THC

The Report Finds That 63% of Tested Delta-8 THC Products Contained Incorrect Amount of Delta-8

Here’s their press release

TEL AVIV, Israel, June 14, 2021 – Leafreport.com (“Leafreport” or the “Company”), the CBD industry’s peer-reviewed watchdog website, announced today the results from a comprehensive review of hemp-derived Delta-8 THC products with the purpose of seeing if these products are safe, legal and contain the advertised amount of Delta-8 THC. Among the research findings, it was found that more than half of the products tested had illegal levels of Delta-9 THC. In addition, out of 38 tested products, only 12 (32%) had the advertised amount of Delta-8 THC. The rest were off by 10.7% to 102.7% from the label.

Leafreport utilized a third-party testing facility for the report. Among the findings, the Company found that 20 (53%) of the products were over the hemp legal limit for Delta-9 THC (0.3%), containing as much as 15.2% THC. In addition, 13 (34%) of the products did not clearly list the Delta-8 content on the label or online product description. Most of the products (68%) had less Delta-8 than advertised.

“Hemp-derived Delta-8 THC has exploded in popularity in 2021. It has been touted as a ‘legal high,’ but Delta-8 products have also raised concerns over their legality, safety and accuracy. This is why we felt it was important to test these products,” said Lital Shafir, the head of product at Leafreport. “Leafreport’s mission is to help promote transparency across the CBD industry and educate consumers so they can access products that are safe and offer the contents being advertised. Reports like this shed light on Delta-8 products, educate consumers and hopefully encourage companies to be more diligent about their testing standards.”

The report also showed that Delta-8 pre-rolls and gummies were more likely to have inaccurate Delta-8 levels than tinctures and vape products.

Leafreport utilized the Las Vegas-based cannabis testing lab Canalysis for third-party testing. The lab technicians tested them for potency and heavy metals, and recorded the results in documents called certificates of analysis (COAs).

This report is one of many completed by Leafreport aimed at informing consumers about various aspects of the CBD industry. The Company has previously sent CBD products to the cannabis testing lab Canalysis to see if they contained the advertised levels of CBD, among other tests. These reports include recent deep-dives into topicals, edibles, beverages, and more.

To read the full report from Leafreport, visit:

https://www.leafreport.com/education/delta-8-thc-products-market-report-11339.

Summary

 

Out of 38 tested products, only 32% (12) had the advertised amount of Delta-8 THC. The rest were off by 10.7% to 102.7% from the label.

There were also other interesting findings:

  • 53% (20) of the products were over the hemp legal limit for Delta-9 THC (0.3%), containing as much as 15.2% THC
  • 34% (13) of the products did not clearly list the Delta-8 content on the label or online product description
  • Most of the products (68%) had less Delta-8 than advertised
  • Delta-8 pre-rolls and gummies were more likely to have inaccurate Delta-8 levels than tinctures and vape products
  • All of the products passed tests for heavy metals

Accuracy Rating

We measured the accuracy of Delta-8 products by comparing how much Delta-8 they were advertised to have versus the amount shown on Canalysis’ third-party lab test reports.

If the product did not clearly show the Delta-8 concentration, we used the total listed cannabinoid content or third-party test results provided by the manufacturer. A few products had none of this information, so they automatically received the worst rating.

Industry experts recommend that cannabis products should contain cannabinoid levels that are within 10% of the advertised amount.

In other words, Delta-8 products should have anywhere from 90% to 110% of the amount stated on the label to be considered accurate.

Using this 10% cutoff, we assigned each product one of four ratings to represent its accuracy:

  1. A (Excellent): independent lab tests showed Delta-8 levels that were within 10% of what was stated on the label.
  2. B (Decent): independent lab tests showed Delta-8 levels that were within 20% of the label.
  3. C (Poor): independent lab tests showed Delta-8 levels that were within 30% of the label.
  4. F (Fail): independent lab tests showed Delta-8 levels that differed from the label by more than 30%.

What Is Delta-8? Why Is It Controversial?

Delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is a form of THC, the main intoxicating compound in cannabis.

Most people are only familiar with Delta-9-THC, which is usually just called “THC.” Delta-8 is weaker than Delta-9-THC but can still make you high and cause other common effects such as red eyes and sleepiness.

Delta-9-THC and the cannabis plants that contain it are federally illegal. The only exception is hemp, a variety of cannabis that’s rich in CBD and has too little Delta-9-THC (0.3% or less of dry weight) to cause psychoactive effects.

However, it’s possible to make Delta-8 from CBD. In other words, Delta-8-THC products made from hemp-derived CBD offer a “legal high” as long as they contain no more than the 0.3% Delta-9 THC.

Delta-8 is controversial because legislators never expected the cannabis industry to find a way to make intoxicating products from hemp. That’s why many individual states are now banning Delta-8 to close this loophole.

Check out this article to learn more about Delta-8-THC.

Delta-8 Third-Party Testing Explained

Third-party tests are done by an independent lab to confirm the safety and potency of hemp and cannabis products.

These tests are important when shopping for CBD and Delta-8 because some products have incorrect cannabinoid levels or carry contaminants.

The most important third-party test is called a cannabinoid profile or potency test. It measures the amount of CBD, Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC, and other cannabinoids in a product.

For our report, we ordered potency and heavy metals tests. Verifying the potency of a Delta-8 product is important for several reasons:

  • You want to know you’re getting exactly what you paid for
  • A product with less Delta-8 than claimed will be less effective
  • A product with more Delta-8 than claimed can cause unwanted side effects
  • A product with over 0.3% Delta-9 THC is not only illegal but also increases the risk of side effects

Certificate of Analysis (CoA)

We bought 38 Delta-8 products and sent them to the Las Vegas-based cannabis testing lab Canalysis. The lab technicians tested them for potency and heavy metals and recorded the results in documents called certificates of analysis (CoAs).

Next, we checked if the products passed heavy metals tests and compared the amount of Delta-8 shown on the CoAs to the advertised Delta-8 content of each product. We also checked whether their Delta-9 THC levels were below the 0.3% legal limit for hemp.

To give you an example, if a company sold a tincture that should contain 300 mg of Delta-8 but the tests only showed 200 mg, that means it had 33% less Delta-8 than claimed.

This poor result would receive our F rating since you’d be getting much less Delta-8 than you paid for.

How to Read CoAs

Most CBD and Delta-8 brands publish third-party CoAs directly on their website. This way, it’s easy for you to confirm that a product is safe, reliable, and effective before buying it.

Reading a CoA may seem difficult because of the scientific jargon but it’s not that complicated. The main thing to look for is the section called “cannabinoids,” “cannabinoid profile,” “potency,” or something similar.

Here, you’ll see columns and graphs with names of cannabinoids such as CBD, Delta-8 THC, Delta-9 THC, and others, and their amounts in percentages or milligrams (mg) per milliliter (ml), gram (g), serving, unit, or the whole container.

If you want more info on reading CoAs, check out our detailed guide.

Summary Table

Below is the summary of the test results for the 38 Delta-8 THC products we sent to Canalysis. These include tinctures, vape products, pre-rolled joints, gummies, and other edibles.

Note 1: Products with a bolded Delta-9 THC content are over the legal limit for hemp (0.3%). Those with a minus sign under the variance column contained less Delta-8 than stated on the label, while others had more.

Note 2: Products with an * were found to have illegal Delta-9-THC levels. We deleted / blurred their names because it’s possible for test results to vary due to lab conditions but kept all other information.

Disclaimer: Our report is based solely on the lab test findings. Test results may vary because it’s normal for products to have differences in cannabinoid levels. Our findings should not be seen as conclusive, complete, error-free, or at all times methodologically or scientifically accurate. Nothing contained in this report should be construed as a recommendation to use or refrain from taking any product, or to reflect on the nature of the tested products, their efficacy, or otherwise. References in this report to any specific products, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the reader and does not constitute an endorsement, recommendation, or otherwise. Furthermore, the information in this report is provided for educational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. It’s not meant as a substitute or an alternative to information from health care practitioners. Please consult your doctor before using any product reviewed herein.

PRODUCT NAME% DELTA-9 THCRATING CLAIMED DELTA-8ACTUAL DELTA-8VARIANCE 
Euphorium Delta 8 Gummies0.075A2522.688-9.25
* Delta 8 Cartridge (deleted / blurred  brand name)8.710*A970907.417-6.45
* Delta 8 Tincture (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.419* A1000985.680-1.43
Chill Plus Full Spectrum Delta 8 CBD Oil0.210A500543.3308.67
Blue Moon Hemp Delta 8 Gummies0.044A2522.939-8.24
Sconi Boys Delta 8 Tincture0.271A1000942.600-5.74
* Delta 8 Cartridge (deleted / blurred  brand name)15.210* A920845.233-8.13
* Delta 8 THC Vape Cartridge (deleted / blurred  brand name)12.485* A822.6858.8234.40
* Delta 8 Disposable Vape Pen (deleted / blurred  brand name)9.712* A854.1799.650-6.38
Treetop Hemp Co Delta 8 Gummies0.034A3028.196-6.01
Utoya Delta 8 Chocolate Bar0.039A200208.0214.01
Holief Delta 8 Gummies0.034A87.414-7.32
Endocure Delta 8 Gummies0.137B2522.172-11.31
* Vape Cartridge (deleted / blurred  brand name)11.220* B1000853.397-14.66
* Hemp Pre Roll (deleted / blurred  brand name)1.287* B76.2890.57318.74
PureKana Delta 8 Gummies0.032B2522.040-11.84
Hell Ya Delta 8 Drink Mix0.131B150172.35214.90
* Oil Pen (deleted / blurred  brand name)9.325* B1000836.334-16.37
Sun State Hemp Delta 8 Tincture0.134B600676.20012.70
The Hemp Doctor D-Bombs0.031B55.70714.14
* Delta 8 THC Disposable Vape (deleted / blurred  brand name)12.725* B947846.051-10.66
Sunmed Above Delta 8 Gummies0.000B1213.80615.05
* Delta 8 Pre Roll (deleted / blurred  brand name)1.964* C168.7130.673-22.54
* Dab Sauce (deleted / blurred  brand name)4.862* C510403.549-20.87
* Delta 8 Cartridge (deleted / blurred  brand name)11.726* C950686.227-27.77
* Delta 8 Cartridge (deleted / blurred  brand name)5.952* C1100780.976-29.00
* Delta 8 THC Hemp Pre-Roll (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.807* F8845.378-48.43
Dr Blaze Delta 8 Chocolate Balls0.028F250111.550-55.38
* Delta 8 THC Infused Hemp Pre Roll (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.696* F213.674.199-65.26
Farma Barn Delta 8 THC Gummies0.095F2537.05548.22
Lit Delta 8 Gummies0.081F2537.09148.37
The Hemp Doctor Delta 8 Cosmic Rings0.050F3042.49941.66
* Delta 8 Pre Roll (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.505* F31.7216.502-47.98
Dr. Hemp Delta 8 Pre Roll0.217FNA10.826NA
* Delta 8 Gummies (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.325* F3060.812102.71
* Delta 8 Flower (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.563* F1507.483-95.01
* Hemp Pre Roll (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.747* FNA32.807NA
* Delta 8 Preroll (deleted / blurred  brand name)0.902* F13439.494-70.53

Conclusion

We expected Delta-8 products to be less accurate than their CBD counterparts because they’re in a legal gray area. As a result, the companies offering Delta 8 have less experience than regular CBD brands and are more likely to cut corners.

Our findings confirmed our suspicions, since only 12 (32%) of the products scored an A for accuracy, while 10 (26%) got a B, 4 (10%) a C, and 12 (32%) received the worst F rating.

On top of that, about a third of the products (34%) did not clearly list the Delta-8 content on the label or the product’s online description.

Another key finding was that more than half (53%) of the products had over 0.3% of Delta-9 THC, which is the legal limit for hemp. This is quite ironic as a major selling point of Delta 8 is that it’s a legal alternative to cannabis in states where it’s illegal.

The most likely explanation for the high THC levels is insufficient refining since the process used to make Delta-8 THC from CBD produces a sizable amount of Delta-9 THC.

Another interesting discovery was that pre-rolls and gummies were less accurate than tinctures and vapes, likely because liquid products are easier to formulate.

Overall, our investigation confirmed that Delta-8 products are mostly offered by inexperienced companies looking to make a quick buck.

These products provide little information about their cannabinoid content and have a high chance of containing inaccurate Delta-8 and illegal Delta-9 THC levels. That’s why we recommend that consumers avoid Delta-8 products.

If you still want to buy one, look for brands that list the Delta-8 content, provide third-party tests to verify the Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC levels, and have been selling CBD products for at least a few years before expanding into the Delta 8 market.

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