VRX Labs is committed to defining testing standards for all legal cannabis and cannabis products. Conceived with scientific and medical expertise, VRX Labs brings to the California market what many Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC) license holders need— Accurate, Consistent, and Efficient (ACE) methodology and results.
First, the science. Our lab employees, from our director and supervisors to analysts who have trained in scientific methodology in the industry, have the expertise and experience to meet the ISO 17025 certification standards. VRX Labs’ scientists consistently implement proven methods to reduce random errors. Not only do we provide our customers with the confidence to sell their products throughout the state, but we help consumers have trust in products purchased at legal dispensaries.
At VRX Labs, quality is no accident. It is derived from the willful application of established scientific methodologies.
Second, our investment in state-of-the-art equipment. We utilize equipment from industries that are required to quickly and accurately measure quantities in an analyte to a part per billion. This accuracy, along with high expectations, has defined the culture and ethic of VRX Labs. With the BCC beginning to audit results and requiring minimal variation from state and audited results, the scientific methods utilized by VRX Labs are critical to successfully producing accurate and consistent results.
Third, our commitment to you. VRX Labs’ commitment to our customers extends well beyond providing accurate test results. We understand that your reputation depends on the quality of the products you provide. We take the time to consult with you on your specific testing needs and develop methods to meet them. VRX Lab scientists take it a step further to review long-term collective data, identify trends and patterns, and provide actionable information to our customers that allows them to adjust processes and maximize production while minimizing variances.
VRX Labs’ commitment to ACE is not only a tagline, but it is also how we approach the work we do for BCC license holders.
Medical and recreational use of cannabis has been legalized in an increasing number of states. In the absence of federal regulatory framework, each individual state has developed their own guidelines for cannabis including goods production, labeling, and sales, as well as safety and quality testing. States that have implemented a regulatory framework to ensure legal cannabis products are safe for consumption require several standards to be satisfied. To satisfy these standards, a license holder (manufacture, extractor, grower, and distributor) must validate the safety and conformity of the cannabis product within state guidelines. VRX Labs provides the reliable results needed by BCC license holders to sell their product at legal dispensaries in the state.
A significant concern to cannabis products is accurate potency testing and labeling, specifically as it relates to the content of psychotropic tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). As it is true for alcohol content of beverages, quantitative determination of potency and adequate product labeling are essential to optimize the safety of cannabis product use. As the nascent cannabis industry grows and becomes multi-state and soon nationwide, it is reaching an increasing number of potential consumers, including some with no cannabis product experience. Accurate potency labeling is paramount for consumers to avoid using inappropriate doses which are associated with the negative effects of cannabis.
Few people know the cannabis plant is a phytoremediator. Phytoremediation is a process by which a plant’s natural capacity and attributes may be used to eliminate toxic chemicals, pesticides, and pollutants from soil and water. When working with outdoor growers and plants, special attention is paid to historical data showing spikes in pesticides or other toxic substances. Once absorbed by the mother plant, her clones could contain these same pesticides. Because smoked cannabis flower is heated to high temperatures before it is absorbed through the lungs, pesticides and other pollutants can enter the body unfiltered and have severely detrimental effects on human health.
Many BCC license holders have heard of the “micro” test. This test is to identify certain organic contaminants that pose a significant danger to humans. The presence of fungal spores in cannabis product, specifically Aspergillus and E. Coli, are pathogens. Such known human pathogens have been linked through cannabis use by immunocompromised consumers to overwhelming and potentially fatal systemic fungal infections. As the use of medical and recreational cannabis expands to reach cancer patients and other vulnerable populations, these pathogens will remain a significant concern. Microbiological testing identifies whether these organisms exist in the analyte and the extent of contamination. While it is unlikely to have a zero result, the threshold imposed by the BCC and other cannabis regulatory bodies is fairly low for a test to indicate the presence of such contaminants.
California’s Mandatory Testing Framework for All Upstream License Holders
Various states have approached the above safety concerns differently. However, a common thread is that testing should be undertaken by state-licensed independent testing laboratories.
In the State of California, the governing body is the Bureau of Cannabis Control (BCC), created to develop a set of proposed regulations for cannabis testing. These rules specify a scientifically determined framework for cannabis testing labs to operate in, with the expressed purpose of ensuring high standards of result accuracy and reproducibility. Testing in California was divided into phase I, II and III, all of which VRX Labs performs.
Additionally, the BCC has required that all testing labs get ISO 17025 Accredited. ISO 17025 is an internationally recognized accreditation proving the competency of testing labs. This is to ensure accurate and consistent results independent of industry pressures and to prevent the sales of potentially harmful products to consumers.