Heavy Metals Screening
Inhalation or ingestion of heavy metals can cause severe illness, including neurotoxicity, in humans. By nature, the cannabis and hemp plant will accumulate metals and other elements from the air, soil, water, pesticides, and fertilizers in their cultivation environment—both outdoors and indoors. Heavy metals can also be introduced during the manufacturing process and can hide in surprising places such as in the hardware or final packaging of the product.
What is a Heavy Metal?
Heavy metals are high-density metals found in the environment that can be both harmful (as detailed above) or beneficial to humans at certain levels, such as iron. These metals are easily transferred into our food supply and have become a growing health concern for cannabis and hemp consumers.
We Test for 4 Heavy Metals:
An element that naturally occurs in ocean water and is a result of anthropogenic impact. Cadmium is found in most soils, rocks, coal, and fertilizers. It is also found in food produce, often in leafy vegetables. It is used in a variety of industrial and electronic applications. Cadmium toxicity via oral administration effects the kidneys by damaging renal functions and significantly weakens the bones. Long-term toxicity via inhalation decreases lung function and causes emphysema.
A significantly toxic and carcinogenic and is readily available in many different forms which can leach back into the environment – such as arsenical pesticides which may run off and contaminate drinking water sources. Arsenic acts as a poison by causing a failure of cell respiration, cell enzymes and mitosis and can lead to death.
A highly toxic metal that is widely used and has caused serious environmental concerns due to its high level of contamination around the globe. Unlike other heavy metals, lead does not have any biological functions, and even in small quantities can disrupt physiological processes.
An element found in combined forms of inorganic salts and organic compounds. Microorganisms in water and soil produce the mercury compound, methylmercury which is found in some fish making it unsafe to eat. Mercury is used in several different industries like electronics, medical, and cosmetics. Oral exposure damages the renal and reproductive systems, and inhaling mercury vapor will cause shortness of breath, lung irritation, and neurological effects like anxiety and irritability.
HOW DO WE TEST?
After digesting the sample material with strong acids, we use ICP-MS (inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry) to detect any trace of heavy metals.