Microbial testing is a critical step in bringing new hemp products to market. If your products are found to be contaminated during the production process, remediation is possible at little cost.
However, if your products have found their way to supermarket shelves, microbial contamination could harm consumers’ health, cause costly lawsuits, and product recalls may significantly hurt your bottom line.
Here are three reasons you should test your hemp products for microbial contamination:
1 – Opportunity for contamination is rife
Hemp products are susceptible to microbial contamination at every stage of the production process, from farm to supermarket shelves. Pseudomonas aeruginosa, for instance, is commonly found in soil and water. Meanwhile, some 25% of people and animals have Staphylococcus aureus present in the nose and on the skin.
Stringent hygiene protocols reduce the risk but even so, harmful microbials could slip through the cracks via unsuspecting sources of contamination such as a leaky air conditioner, the contaminated hands of a worker, or weather changes resulting in an increase in humidity. Most concerning of all, some microbials like Pseudomonas are resistant to many disinfectants and antimicrobial agents.
If contaminated products find their way in the hands of consumers, even a single exposure can result in severe illness. Pseudomonas infection in people with weakened immune system, especially cystic fibrosis, can cause chronic illness. Listeria monocytogenes has been known to cause miscarriages among pregnant mothers.
Besides observing current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP), testing is an important weapon in every hemp producer’s arsenal when defending against microbial contamination.
2 – Protect and enhance brand image
Recalls due to contamination can cause more than just a dip in revenue. The trust and relationships you so carefully built with your customers over the years would be tainted and it would be much harder to earn back the second time around.
Conversely, hemp brands that actively test for microbials demonstrate their commitment to safety early on. With consumers today being more aware and conscious than ever about what they put in their bodies, testing goes a long way in establishing a positive brand image and ultimately, makes your hemp product the preferred choice.
3 – Stay compliant with regulations
State regulations are starting to mandate microbial testing. For example, California now requires microbial testing for hemp products, based on the new CBD law passed in October 2021. This means hemp companies planning to do business in the state must produce proof of microbial testing or risk going against regulations.
With more states likely to follow suit, microbial testing is inevitable. Testing now prepares your hemp business and ensures it stays ahead of the compliance curve.
Botanacor will be launching three new microbial tests soon. Want to know more? Contact us or email firstname.lastname@example.org today.
-  “Staphylococcal (Staph) Food Poisoning”, CDC, accessed November 16, 2021, https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/diseases/staphylococcal.html.