Your Ultimate Guide on the CBD Certificate of Analysis

Chances are you’ve heard a thing or two about CBD. After all, it’s just about everywhere these days — athletes and celebrities are endorsing it, and the media is constantly talking about it. It’s infused in lotions, balms, patches, chews, and more, and can be found in grocery stores, spas, fitness centers, and even gas stations. 

With reported healing benefits ranging from soothing feelings of tension to guiding you to sleep, CBD is taking over the world — and it’s easy to see why. 

With that takeover, we’re fortunate to have improved regulation and more ways to help ensure quality — cue COAs, i.e. Certificates of Analysis. A COA is your ticket to truth — it’s a report that, when performed by an independent third-party laboratory, will tell you everything you need to know about what ingredients are actually in the product in question. 

Interested in learning more? We can help. Read on for your ultimate guide on the CBD certificate of analysis. 

But First, Let’s Unpack Some of the Basics 

One of the most exciting ingredients in health and wellness, cannabidiol — or CBD for short — is one of over 100+ natural phytocannabinoids (naturally occurring plant compounds) found in and extracted from hemp, a versatile plant belonging to the Cannabis sativa family

Unlike its infamous cousin tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), notoriously known for its intoxicating effects, CBD won’t get you high. 

Is CBD Legal? 

On a federal level, CBD is legal, but only if it’s extracted from industrial hemp — not marijuana — containing no more than 0.3 percent THC.

Despite what many people may think, hemp and marijuana are two totally different varieties of the Cannabis sativa plant. While it’s true that they both produce CBD, along with other healing compounds, the biggest difference really boils down to THC. 

You see, hemp oil has an extremely low amount of THC — so low that it has no intoxicating effects on you whatsoever. Marijuana, on the other hand, contains a much higher amount of THC (and very little CBD) which is why it’s the plant of choice to cultivate many cannabis products like edibles.   

Due to its high THC content, the plant is federally illegal in the United States along with many other countries around the globe. 

What’s the Best Way To Ensure You Don’t Break the Law? 

At the end of the day, CBD is legal at the federal level — THC is not. 

So, the very best way to make 100% sure that you don’t break the law is simply by purchasing CBD oil without any THC in it. To do that, you’ll need to stick with broad-spectrum CBD oil

Here at Healist, we’ve chosen to use the highest quality, organic broad-spectrum hemp extract in each of our products, like our topicals. Unlike full-spectrum CBD hemp extract, which contains around 0.3 percent THC, our broad-spectrum hemp extracts are non-psychoactive with undetectable levels of THC.

We love broad-spectrum hemp extract because it not only contains especially high levels of CBD without a trace of THC, but it includes other amazing healing cannabinoids, such as CBG, CBN, CBC, CBDV, and CBDA, as well as therapeutic compounds like amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and terpenes. 

Together, these body-nourishing ingredients work in perfect synergy with each other to power your body — just as nature intended.*

Got It — So, How Can You Confirm a CBD Product’s Legality? 

Unfortunately, most CBD-infused products on the market these days are sold as supplements, which are not regulated by the FDA

This means that companies are free to advertise that a hemp CBD product is 100% legal even if what’s being marketed isn’t necessarily true. 

More simply: CBD with a max of 0.3% THC is federally legal. Anything more than that can only be sold in states that have legalized recreational cannabis. How can you know the THC levels are less than 0.3%? The Certificate of Analysis, i.e. the COA. 

Everything You Need To Know About The COA 

A certificate of analysis — or COA for short — is an important document from an accredited independent laboratory that displays the results of CBD testing on the product’s full composition. The result (mg/g) column tells you how each cannabinoid (analyte) is concentrated within every gram of the product.

This document should include the following:

  • Cannabinoids
  • Terpenes
  • Microbiological Levels
  • Contaminants (i.e., pesticides, mold, yeast, etc.)
  • Heavy metals
  • Residual solvents

At Healist our pact to you is total transparency. We’re taking action against misinformation, deceptive labeling, soft truths, and white lies to equip you with everything you need to stay informed! 

On every single Healist product, you’ll find a QR code and batch code that allows you to view all third-party lab reports so you can see exactly what goes into each and every product. 

Where Can I Find A COA?

Not all companies will provide a COA — some companies don’t even do third party testing. 

At Healist, we want you to feel confident in your purchase. That’s why we make it especially easy for consumers to locate our lab results. Besides, we’ve got nothing to hide and are very proud of our products. You see, our ethos is simple: always 100% clean and natural ingredients, always 100% benefit-focused products.  

If you can’t easily find the lab results on the company’s website, or if they don’t mention their results anywhere in the advertising, those results are probably out of sight for a reason.  

CBD COA Red Flags To Watch For

You can learn a lot from a COA — both good and bad. Here are a few red flags to watch for upon reading the CBD certificate of analysis:

  • Over 0.3% THC. By law, it is illegal to have more than this amount of THC in a CBD product sold outside of states where recreational cannabis is legal. 
  • In-house testing. If a company tells you that they do all of their testing in-house so they can provide you with CBD products at a lower price — purchase elsewhere. Independent testing is best — if the company selling you the products performs its own tests, then can you really trust them? Probably not. 
  • Foreign matter. When reviewing the COA, make 100% sure that there isn’t any foreign matter in the product as it can be potentially harmful to you. You’re buying CBD for the CBD, not the pesticides, insecticides, heavy metals, herbicides, and other contaminants that can end up in products that haven’t been tested for purity. 
  • Artificial ingredients. There are a ton of great benefits from using organic CBD, like what we use here at Healist. Unfortunately, some companies will choose to cut corners by using products not grown in the USA and misleading you on their effects. With that being said, if the company doesn’t display its components or if they use ingredients that you can’t even marginally recognize, you should jump ship as all ingredients should be crystal clear on the product label. 

Wrapping It Up

Now that you’ve got some guidance on the certificate of analysis, you’re ready to hunt down the creme de la creme of CBD products and navigate COAs. 

Locating and reading through a product’s certificate of analysis may seem a bit daunting at first, but taking the extra time to make 100% sure you’re getting exactly what you’re looking for is well worth it. After all, you want to know what you’re putting in your body, don’t you? We thought so. 

At Healist, our pact to you is total transparency. Not only do we keep our lab results on our website where you can view them at your leisure, but on every product, you’ll find a QR code and batch code that allow you to view all lab reports in an instant. 

Whether you’re looking to find calm, sleeprelief, or wellness support, you can always count on us to provide you with transparency that you can trust across every single ingredient, every claim, and every action. 

Check us out today and experience the power of plant-based science tomorrow! 



Cannabidiol Market Growth Analysis Report | 2021-2028

FDA Regulation of Cannabis and Cannabis-Derived Products, Including Cannabidiol (CBD) | FDA Gov

Cannabis Systematics at the Levels of Family, Genus, and Species | NCB