Research published by Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research suggests that the way CBD extracts are stored may impact the THC levels of the final product. It is well known that when CBD stored in an acidic environment, some of it cyclizes to form THC. If it turns out that the tetrahydrocannabinol contained in the extracted extract is high in impurities, then this may have an impact on the way commercial manufacturers package and store CBD products.
Although CBD extracts usually derived from hemp, biotech companies are working hard to develop a method of producing synthetic CBD to reduce production costs. The reaction used to produce synthetic CBD also produces other by-products, including trace amounts of D9-THC and D8-THC. Pure CBD solutions need to be chromatographed to remove impurities.
The authors of this latest study used liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry to analyze samples stored under various conditions to study the stability of synthetic CBD and plant-derived CBD extracts. Accelerated stability test, during which the CBD solution is stored in an environment where the temperature and relative humidity are higher than the usual storage of CBD solutions.
They found that both the newly synthesized and unextracted CBD samples did not contain THC or other impurities. However, when the samples stored in the dark and at room temperature for three months, they were found to contain small amounts of D9-THC and D8-THC. The authors speculate that the presence of carbon dioxide and moisture causes a low CBD to converted to THC.
Besides, they concluded that if proper storage conditions followed, there should be no significant THC conversion in pharmaceutical CBD products. Even in the accelerated stability test, the maximum combined concentration of β9-THC and β8-THC is 0.15%, lower than the threshold required by regulations in the United States and Canada.
CBD producers may need to evaluate whether appropriate storage instructions (for example, refrigeration and optimal shelf life) can minimize THC impurities in the end product.