Cannabis Testing Laboratory Accreditation Program
A2LA offers accreditation to laboratories performing analytical testing of cannabis and cannabis-derived products, such as flowers, concentrates, butters/waxes, drinks, tinctures, oils and edibles, as well as hemp and hemp-derived products.
Appropriate testing is critical to demonstrate that these products do not contain harmful levels of contaminants or adulterants and are safe for public consumption.
Specific testing may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- Cannabinoid testing and content (CBC, CBD, CBDa, CBG, CBN, THC, THCa, THCv, etc.)
- Terpene profile
- Pesticides/fungicides/plant growth regulators
- Residual solvents
- Heavy metals
- Microbiological contaminants (mold, insects, bacteria, etc.)
Laboratories can also be accredited for the sampling associated with subsequent testing. Click here for more information.
With the recent passing of the Farm Bill in 2018, A2LA can accredit laboratories for hemp testing prior to cannabis being legalized in their state or in lieu of/addition to cannabis testing.
Confidence in the laboratories that perform this testing, and assurance in the test results, is possible through accreditation to the ISO/IEC 17025 standard. The ISO/IEC 17025 standard is non-prescriptive and flexible, allowing the organization maximum flexibility in determining what works best for their business needs.
Cannabis testing laboratories may select one of two tracks for A2LA accreditation. The accreditation tracks both provide independent, third-party accreditation assessments crafted to serve both the medical cannabis and recreational adult-use markets. These tracks are as follows:
- ISO/IEC 17025 as the primary framework, along with any additional, state-specific requirements
- ISO/IEC 17025 and the additional accreditation requirements derived from the Americans for Safe Access (ASA) Patient Focused Certification (PFC) Program for testing laboratories. Please see A2LA’s R243 – Specific Requirements: Cannabis Testing Laboratory Accreditation Program for more details.
The PFC Laboratory Operations requirements are constructed in accordance with the Recommendations to Regulators for Cannabis Operations, a guide developed by the Cannabis Committee for the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA). An assessment to these additional requirements is voluntary. The additional requirements include security, personnel training, sample receipt, chain of custody, handling and disposal, and data review.
Please contact us for more information on specific state requirements for testing to determine the minimum cannabis testing required.
Why ISO/IEC 17025 for Cannabis Testing Laboratories
Summary of CASCO ISO/IEC 17025 WG44 Drafting Group Meeting in Geneva, July 2017
Revising ISO/IEC 17025 – A Summary of CASCO WG44 Meeting 5
ISO/IEC 17025:2017 - Forensic Q&A
ISO/IEC 17025 Identified as an Approved Forensic Standard by the OSAC
ISO/IEC 17025 and ISO/IEC 17011 Update
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