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Analysis of Residual Pesticides and Mycotoxins in Cannabis Using UPLC-MS/MS and GC-MS/MS to Meet California Regulatory Requirements

Introduction

The increased use of both medical and recreational cannabis in combination with its expanding legal acceptance in several US states1 has led to demanding cannabis safety and quality control testing. Analytical testing typically includes cannabinoids profiling/potency, mycotoxins, terpenes, residual solvents, metals, and pesticide residues analysis. Pesticides are of particular interest as they are widely used in the cultivation of cannabis plants to safeguard against harmful insects and to promote crop yields. The application of pesticides is strictly regulated,2 and their residues in cannabis products are closely monitored by state regulatory agencies in order to protect consumers. The number of regulated pesticides that are required to be monitored varies by state as do the action limits which range from 0.01 μg/g (10 ppb) to above 1 μg/g (1 ppm).

Authors

Kim Tran,1 Kari Organtini,1 Marian Twohig,1 Michael Young,1 Gareth Cleland,1 Ken Rosnack,1 Naren Meruva,1 Gordon Fujimoto,2, Rebecca Stevens,3 James Roush,3 and Christopher Hudalla3
1 Waters Corporation, Milford, MA, USA; 2 Waters Corporation, Beverly, MA, USA; 3 ProVerde Laboratories, Milford, MA, USA

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