Cannabis and hemp are front and center in the 2020 AOAC INTERNATIONAL Midyear Meeting! Here is what’s happening:

Standards requirements for salmonella, heavy metals, and moisture content testing

The Cannabis Analytical Science Program (CASP) will meet on Wednesday March 11, 2020 to review Standard Method Performance Requirements (SMPRs) for Salmonella in cannabis; heavy metals in cannabis, and moisture content in dried plant materials. 

All three SMPRs are critical for method developers and the cannabis testing community as most state labs that are testing cannabis test for Salmonella. The new SMPR for Salmonella in cannabis sets the standards for Salmonella methods.  Similarly, most state laboratories that are testing cannabis test for heavy metals and we will be reviewing an SMPR that provides guidance on the requirements for heavy metal methods.

New methods: residual solvents, cannabinoids in hemp

The AOAC Midyear meeting will include Expert Review Panels to review candidate methods for detection of residual solvents in cannabis derived products; and for cannabinoids in hemp by dry weight.  Methods for residual solvents will be used to protect consumers from solvents used in the processing of cannabis to make cannabis products like CBD oils. Methods for cannabinoids in hemp by dry weight will support the US Domestic Hemp Production Program established by the USDA.

Hemp analysis: future challenges

The future challenges of hemp analysis will be highlighted as part of the Analytical Solution Forum on March 10, 2020.  Holly Johnson, CSO for Association for Herbal Products, will discuss AOAC’s role in setting standards for analytical methods for hemp.

AOAC training module: Method development and validation for cannabis

AOAC is launching a new and exciting addition to its method validation training courses.  Training course modules for the three cannabis-focused SMPRs will be added to the core Method Validation Training Course at the Midyear Meeting.  The SMPR training course modules will review analytical requirements of the cannabis-focused SMPRs, and describe the proper procedures to validate cannabis-focused candidate methods for parameters such as limit of detection, accuracy, repeatability, reproducibility, etc.

Townhall forum on vaping

Vape devices create vapor made of fine and ultrafine particles of particulate matter, which have been found to contain propylene glycol, glycerin, nicotine, flavors, small amounts of toxicants, carcinogens, and heavy metals, as well as metal nanoparticles, and other substances.  Despite their ever-growing acceptance, relatively little work has been done to characterize the vapor from vape device related to the liquid or the cartridges employed.

In “Cutting Through the Haze of Vaping: A Townhall on Vaping Products and Inhalants” on March 11, Dr. Christopher Hudalla (CSO for ProVerde Labs) will lead a discussion on the analytical science of testing vape devices with an eye towards AOAC’s potential role in vaping.