​Legalization in Canada: Accurate Potency Testing is More Important Than Ever!

Canadian cannabis businesses are preparing for an explosive boost to business once legalization takes full effect on October 17th. Legalization intends to provide safe cannabis for Canadians, yet the anticipated growth in marijuana sales could actually encourage the opposite effect. Read more.....


Canadian legalization will create a massive influx of flower, edibles, oils, and other products to keep up with consumer demand. This is great for cannabusinesses, but there is an anticipated challenge to effectively test these large quantities of products for safety and potency. While the industry has grown considerably, there’s still a lack of standardized testing procedures.

This could mean sub-standard, or even dangerous, cannabis products could slip through the cracks and make its way to the hands of consumers.

Potency: A Numbers Game

“It’s like a nuclear arms race for the most potent bud. . .Now, THC counts are what really matter” (source)

Recently, the potency of the product, particularly THC content, has become the top priority in the minds of millions of marijuana customers. Sales of strains with the highest THC content often outperform strains with other pleasing traits, such as more terpenes or better flavor. This is partially because THC is easily marketable since you can put a hard number on it, unlike more subjective traits like flavor.

This singular focus on high THC numbers has led to some cannabis testing labs artificially inflating test results for their clients. Last year, Peak Analytics was accused of large-scale inaccuracies in its test results compared to other labs. This past June, The Globe and Mail purchased several products from Toronto cannabis dispensaries and discovered that they contained much lower levels of THC than advertised. Many of these samples even failed to meet Health Canada’s safety standards for medical marijuana, containing dangerous levels of yeast and molds.

Inaccurate Tests Mislead Consumers and Risk Their Health

The idea for labs or dispensaries fudging the numbers on potency is that if you tell customers what they want to hear, they’ll keep coming back. However, a dispensary that receives their tests from these unreliable labs risks tainting their brand if it is found that their product doesn’t contain the THC or CBD that’s advertised. They’ll also be risking their customers’ health, since there’s not much regulation on required contamination testing.

Once dispensaries find out that a cannabis testing lab is sending them inflated numbers, that lab stands to lose business. With regulation of cannabis products still not fully in place, customers need to know that the product they’re buying is 100% safe and contains the potencies that are advertised.

Cannabusinesses need a Reliable Testing lab for Their Product

In preparation for the oncoming boom in business and cannabis products, cannabusinesses need to make sure they’re doing business with reputable, trustworthy testing labs.

The Emerald Test has a proven track record of providing accurate test results to cannabis labs all over the United States and Canada. We offer a comprehensive set of tests for several types of cannabinoids, terpenes, pesticides, microbes, residual solvents, and mycotoxins. If you participate in the spring or fall Emerald Test, you’ll also get an Emerald Badge for each test you excel in. The Emerald Badge shows your clients that the results you give them are guaranteed to be 100% accurate.

This kind of legitimacy will become even more desirable after the influx of cannabis products on October 17th. Looking at what has happened in U.S. states that have legalized marijuana, it’s clear that Canadian legalization will unfortunately lead to some sub-standard or contaminated products entering the market. Being able to prove that your tests are trustworthy will be extremely valuable. 

The Emerald Test Helps Prepare your lab for October 17th

Now is the best time to ensure that your lab's test results are accurate and consistent. Registration for the Fall Emerald Test begins September 12th, and we also provide individual tests. Enroll for the Fall Emerald Test, earn your Emerald Badges, and show potential clients why they should trust your lab for potency testing.