As demand for medicinal use of cannabis grows, an innovative Scottish science company has entered into a collaboration with a leading Canadian cannabis producer to supply test kits which will help eradicate carcinogenic toxins often present in cannabis-based products.
Glasgow-based R-Biopharm Rhône, a business dedicated to food safety, has for some years produced and distributed its test kits for the testing of foodstuffs for a diverse range of toxins.
Recently developed methods have been applied to a variety of plant products such as herbal medicines which have structural similarities to cannabis.
Now, with the legalisation of cannabis for both medicinal and recreational use in several countries, including Canada, producers are looking to R-Biopharm Rhône for its expertise in helping safeguard consumers’ health.
Claire Milligan, a Product Manager at R-Biopharm Rhône, said: “Just like any other ingestible item, strict consumer protection legislation requires that cannabis products, including oils, cookies and cannabis plants themselves, should be tested for the presence of dangerous toxins.
“And while the legality of cannabis products in the UK is currently the subject of wide-ranging debate, in those jurisdictions, such as Canada, certain states in the US, Spain, Portugal and the Netherlands where consumption of cannabis products is permitted, testing for toxins remains of great importance.
“In the wake of the sale to our Canadian customer we anticipate further demand for our test kits in other regions where consumption of cannabis is legal as well as perhaps, at some stage, here in the UK.”
R-Biopharm Rhône has reacted positively in recent years to increasing demand for reliable testing solutions. It has produced tests for toxins in milk, spices, cereals and animal feed amongst others.
The company, based in the West of Scotland Science Park, is one of Scotland’s most successful exporters of diagnostic test kits, selling more than 70% of its output to major international companies outside the UK.
It has been at the forefront of food safety in the UK in recent years, particularly during the horsemeat scandal of 2013 which highlighted the potential dangers of undeclared product adulteration and continues to play a part in the industry’s ongoing issues with labelling and food allergens.