Services

Terpene Profile

Microbials

Mycotoxins

Cannabinoid Potency

Heavy Metals

Lipids

Residual Solvents

Water Activity

Pesticides

Terpene Profile

Terpenes are aromatic molecules responsible for the unique aroma of each cannabis product. The aromas and flavors we experience when we consume cannabis are thanks to terpenes, but more importantly, many of the medical benefits that patients experience are also due to Terpenes. 
 
Highgrade Labs is one of the only labs in the country that can analyze 42 different terpenes in the flower and concentrate products.
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Liquid injection auto-samapler with GC-FID from Agilent Technologies.

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Flower, Concentrates, Infused Products.

The combination of cannabinoid and terpene profiles can contribute to the entourage effect. A terpene breakdown can serve as useful to patients looking to identify additional products with similar profiles and psychological responses.

Many people believe that potency (i.e. high THC) drives the value of cannabis products to consumers and patients. After extensive work analyzing terpene profiles from over 30,000 samples, we at Highgrade believe that specific terpene profiles of cannabis products are the real drivers of psychological responses.

Cannabinoid Potency

Cannabinoid potency testing measures the strength and composition of finished products. Highgrade is able to identify and quantify potency content for 11 cannabinoids.
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Cannabis samples are extracted using a methanol solution and are analyzed using a 1260 Infinity II HPLC with a diode array detector from Agilent.

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THCA, THC-Δ9, THC-Δ8, THCV, THCV, CBD, CBDV, CBGA, CBG, CBC, CBDA and CBN.

Flower, Concentrates, Infused Products.

Proper dosing is vital to any patient treatment plan. Therefore, test reliability, ensuring accuracy in product labeling and formulation, is a critical component of patient care.

residual solvents

The goal of the residual solvents testing is to detect and quantify any solvent in a cannabis extract that may be left over from the extraction process. Some of the solvents tested for include butane, propane, and isopropanol. The scope of testing available varies depending on the regulatory requirements of the state.

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Headspace gas chromatography (HS GC-MS) from Agilent Technologies.

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Concentrates and Infused Products.

Trace amounts of solvents can be present in concentrates from the extraction process. High concentrations of certain solvents can be harmful if consumed. Screening formulated products for residual solvents help ensure solvent presence is below a threshold considered safe for consumption.

Microbials

Microorganisms and bacteria are ubiquitous in our world. They often can grow under the same conditions as cannabis and if consumed, these contaminants could lead to serious illness.
 
Highgrade Labs Microbial screening ensures organisms’ presence is below a threshold considered safe for consumption.
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We perform the total aerobic bacteria count, rapid yeast and mold, and E.coli tests using Petrifilm plates by 3M. The samples get prepared and diluted by 100 times with a buffer solution.

 

Once plated on the Petrifilm they go into a specific temperature controlled incubators for 48 hours. Each sample is then counted for colony forming units and reported on Confident Cannabis.

Flower, Concentrates, and Infused Products.

Heavy Metals

Heavy metals can be found in soil, water supply and in many nutrients used by industry participants. Cannabis is prone to absorbing heavy metals and can cause metals to bioaccumulate in the plant structure.
 
Highgrade Labs heavy metals screening helps to ensure metal presence is below limits considered for safe consumption.
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Heavy metals testing is performed on a 7800 ICP-MS from Agilent. This instrument creates plasma (the fourth state of matter) by circulating, heating, and igniting argon gas in a vacuum.

 

All samples are prepared and extracted using acid-assisted microwave digestion, on a Milestone Ethos Up, to dissolve the sample before being placed on the ICP-MS.

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In addition to Flower, Concentrates and Infused Products, we also help industry professionals test their nutrients and soils to find the source of any contamination

Mycotoxins

Our method confirms the presence of toxins is below the allowable limits of micrograms per kilogram of material. The scope of testing available varies depending on the regulatory requirements of the state.

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We use liquid chromatography with mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) from Agilent Technologies.

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Flower, Concentrates, and Infused Products.

Mycotoxins are toxic secondary metabolites produced by fungi. Mycotoxin screening ensures toxins presence is below a threshold considered safe for consumption.

Lipids

Vitamin E acetate, vegetable glycerol, propylene glycol, and other lipids are additives that can be found in some vape products. These lipids can upset the natural function of surfactants protecting the lungs and lead to lipid accumulation in the lungs, leading to pneumonia or death.

Highgrade Labs can test for these and other adulterants and viscosity modifying agents.

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Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS) from Agilent Technologies.

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Vape products

Recent investigations by the CDC and FDA have linked vitamin E acetate to thousands of lung injury cases across the United States. Screening vape products for Vitamin E Acetate and other additives helps to ensure products are safe for consumption.

Water Activity

Water activity is a measurement of bioavailable water, which is water that is available outside of the cells of the sample.

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Aqualab 3 from Meter Group

 

Flower

Samples should have a water activity (Aw) of less than 0.65, as recommended by the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia. Water activity above 0.65 can support microbial growth.

Pesticides

Highgrade Labs performs pesticide residue testing in accordance with the regulatory requirements of each state within which it is licensed. Platforms and methods were developed and tailored to the requirements of each state program in order to exceed specific minimum detection limits established for recognized hazards.

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Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS),Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS) from Agilent Technologies.

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Flower, Concentrates, and Infused Products.

Pesticides on an apple can be washed off with no harm to the consumer. But pesticides on cannabis that are then exposed to high heat can turn into arsenic and other deadly poisons.

Please contact your local lab for pricing