A study released last month found that samples of CBD oils from one popular manufacturer contained potentially dangerous chemicals not listed in company materials, including a synthetic cannabinoid and a chemical generally found in cough syrup. Researchers said the additives “may lead to unexpected psychoactive effects.”
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The drugs have also been linked to dozens of overdoses and potentially several deaths, leading to the classification of 5F-ADB and several other synthetic cannabinoids as Schedule I controlled substances. In some cases, these chemicals are suspected to have been marketed as CBD products in e-liquid or other forms.
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In the weeks since the study’s release, Diamond CBD and its parent company maintained an aggressive marketing campaign nationally and across the internet.
That being said, some third-party websites have comments that don’t fuel potential customers with optimism. There are many complaints on the internet about Diamond CBD’s poor customer service, lost orders that have never been resolved, and aggressive marketing (email spam, calls from different numbers, etc.).
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CBD Pure is one of the trailblazers on the US hemp market. The company has been making high-quality full-spectrum products since 2014. An interesting thing about this brand is that, unlike many other pioneers, it decided to maintain a simple product selection and focus on mastering these formulations.
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Diamond CBD offers vape products such as pens, liquids, and vape additives. It also sells a full-spectrum CBD vape tank. Aside from different potencies, you can choose from two flavors, such as strawberry and “jungle juice.”
CBD can be taken many ways, and one is by vaping it in an e-cigarette with a CBD e-liquid. People buy these vaping liquids in stores, and also in a growing number of online retailers.
Peace and her colleagues bought the same two products their caller had taken, Liquid Gold Strawberry and Diamond CBD Vape Additive, and seven more to test. They purchased them directly from diamondcbd.com. They analyzed the ingredients using Direct Analysis in Real Time Mass Spectrometry (DART-MS) and Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS)—both powerful and validated methods of separating and identifying chemicals.
All of the liquids did have CBD in them. But two contained THC, a compound in weed known to get you high and one that a pure-CBD product is not expected to contain more than .3 percent of. Meanwhile, a product called Diamond CBD Vape Additive was found to contain dextromethorphan, while Liquid Gold Jungle Juice, Liquid Gold Strawberry, and also the Diamond CBD Vape Additive contained the synthetic marijuana.
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Diamond CBD’s chief executive officer, Kevin Hagen, told CR that current formulations of the products differ from those that were tested. He also said that the company’s products are subject to third-party testing and that as a result of Consumer Reports’ questions and the study findings, it planned to retest all its products and issue a recall if they are found to have been adulterated. “The company strives to provide the assurance that we supply the best, highest-quality products on the market,” Hagen said, adding that he supports regulation to ensure the safety and quality of CBD products.
Diamond CBD did not respond after multiple attempts for comment. In an article from earlier this month, Consumer Reports wrote:
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Dextromethorphan is used in cough syrups and can cause “agitation, ataxia, hypertonic, sedation and may produce dissociative hallucinations at high doses,” the new paper says. Teens are increasingly using it to get high, and it’s one of the most frequent over-the-counter causes of poisoning for people aged 13 to 18. In large doses, dextromethorphan is abused to achieve similar highs as PCP and ketamine.
It’s relatively common to find THC in CBD products, including vape liquids, says Kevin Hill, an addiction psychiatrist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. A paper from 2017 in The Journal of the American Medical Association looked at a variety of online CBD products and found that only 30 percent were labeled to match what was actually in them. Some had more or less CBD than advertised, and some had additional compounds. 21 percent also had THC in them. This could have an important impact, for example, on a drug test taken for employment.