Inconsistencies in THC Levels of Popular Edibles

Independent testing of popular edibles products for sale in Colorado recreational shops reveals significant deviation from their labeled THC levels – in most cases, levels far lower than advertised.

The Denver Post commissioned potency tests on 13 popular edibles, and 10 of the products had actual THC values that were less than indicated on the packaging.

In the case of three products manufactured by the company Dr. J’s – which were all advertised to have 100 milligrams of THC – the actual THC content tested at less than 1 mg. In some Dr. J’s products, the THC content was 1/300th of the advertised value. The tests were commissioned after several consumer complaints about the potency of the company’s products.

Tom Sterlacci, CEO of Dr. J’s, questioned the results of the test. He also said that the demands of the recreational market could be responsible for “bad batches” of his product.

, Inconsistencies in THC Levels of Popular EdiblesThe Post used the laboratory Steep Hill Halent to conduct the tests. In the case of the Dr. J’s products, the Steep Hill analyzed products that were manufactured two months apart from one another and separated by 282 batches. Dr. J’s makes between 30,000 to 45,000 units each month, however the company does not test each batch.

“I don’t know that it’s irresponsible, but it’s nonprofessional,” said Steep Hill director Joseph Evans.

Dr. J’s had the most egregious  inconsistencies in THC content tested, but other products also showed low values. Products manufactured by Edi-Pure, Mile High Candy, Cheeba Chews, Sweet Stone Candy and Dixie Elixirs all had products that came up short in the THC potency tests.

Dixie’s soft candy Dixie Rolls, for example, recorded 60 mg of THC for a 100 mg product.

Dixie’s CMO Joe Hodas told the Post that testing can vary significantly from one lab to the next.

“Regardless, we will continue to focus on our quality control to be sure all of our products, from edibles to tinctures and topicals, reflect the agreed-upon milligrams of THC,” Hodas said.


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5 comments on “Inconsistencies in THC Levels of Popular Edibles
  1. Dave on

    With all of the different processes going into making Cannabis Edibles and the lack of regulation, there’s no wonder why the disparity in the edible contents vs what went into the mix to be properly labeled. I have a patent pending process that transfers whatever is in the raw cannabis into the mixture for cooked edibles as well as sprinkled onto foods like ice cream, yogurt, salads, etc. and made into Canna-Capsules. I’m in the process of licensing, as well as current patent infringement for many commercial cannabis edible manufacturers. I’d love to hear back with interest in further information! Dave

  2. mmj on

    To blame laboratory testing technique without explaining what the inconsistencies between labs are is childish and useless. The lab that did the testing should have been ISO accredited. Those familiar with pharmaceutical testing know the importance of traceability and repeatability. This isn’t to say Steephill doesn’t meet these requirements but like they say, “No picture, no proof.”

  3. Jimmy Limo on

    COME ON, Colorado… you’re supposed to be the poster child for legalization ! If we’re going to have pot “just like alcohol”, ALL products must be systematically tested for strength and purity.

  4. Eric Layland on

    Dear Edibles Industry (including test labs),
    Your success or downfall will be the result of user experience. This has been true for the history of commerce. Customers will pay good money for good products. Products that don’t deliver on their brand promise will fail.

    The same warning goes to testing labs. A testing lab must be ISO certified. Not being able and willing to show certificates of calibration (backwards traceability to NIST standards) for all their equipment isn’t a credible operation.

    Both the edible producers and the test labs need to work together to earn the trust of the consumer. Quality testing leads to quality products which establishes trust with consumers.

  5. Truth on

    This is why the pot stigma persists, pot products made by pot heads. Don’t get high on your own supply, invest in proper testing equipment.

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