Yesterday, Shimadzu Scientific Instruments (SSI) announced the release of what looks like weed robot easy-bake oven, but is in fact a ‘high performance liquid chromatograph (HPLC)’. Glad we cleared that up.
All jokes aside, this is actually an amazing tool. The Cannabis Analyzer for Potency is the first-ever machine designed ‘specifically for quantitative determination of cannabinoid content’.
Volteface’s policy director, Dr. Henry Fisher explains:
The machines typically used for cannabis analysis, HPLCs, are actually very complicated, fiddly instruments, both in terms of software and hardware. They are also typically designed for use in a broad range of applications, which makes optimising them for one specific task more of a challenge. Having an HPLC that is designed for analysing cannabis, start to finish, simplifies this process considerably, and makes this technology more accessible to the nascent cannabis industry.
User-friendly instruments like this will help create better reliability and regulation in cannabis analysis, and are crucial as legislation for legal cannabis use moves forward in countries around the world. The ‘tainted weed’ scandals in California and Canada have shown already that there is much work that remains to be done on the standardisation of cannabis testing, to ensure that the products people are consuming are free from things like pesticides and mould. The only reason the problems in California and Canada were caught – and were able to be fixed – is because cannabis is a legal, regulated product in those places.
Dr. Fisher is hopeful that instruments like SSI’s show a move in this direction:
‘Having a specifically tailored instrument to analyse cannabis products is a real step forward when you consider how important reliable analysis is for an effectively regulated market. That well respected scientific equipment brands are also designing products for the cannabis industry is an indication that they see a strong future in this area, and further increases its legitimacy.’