Guide to Finding a Trustworthy CBD Brand

Woman Looking at CBD Oil

It’s incredibly great that we have a plethora of CBD products to choose from nowadays. A quick search on your browser will bring you thousands of options, some of which come with high recommendations from wellness experts and fellow CBD users. Numerous cannabis shops and dispensaries have also sprouted all over the states where hemp is currently legal.

Let’s think for a moment though. Are we supposed to trust right away the first few CBD brands you see on your screen? Is it okay to believe the word of the local storekeeper about which CBD products we should try? Every CBD company claims its products can do this and that, but can we take a chance and just hope for the best?

You’re free to make any of these decisions, but know that by doing so, you’re leaving yourself at risk of buying a substandard CBD product that is not worth your money. Some people have become disillusioned with CBD as a natural wellness solution because of such experiences. That’s why we’re taking our time now to guide you on how to find a CBD brand that you can trust.

We will share with you some of our essential checkpoints when researching and evaluating CBD companies and their product selections, in hopes that you’d keep our advice in mind while you go CBD shopping.

Our Picks for Most Trusted CBD Brands

If you want to check out some of the best CBD brands that we have found, take a look at the ones below. Each one we have listed here are brands that we have vetted carefully and are confident that they are legit companies that offer safe products.

If you’re not quite ready to choose a CBD brand to try out, continue reading through this article to find out more about how you can spot a CBD company that you can really trust.

Certified by the US Hemp Authority

Even though the US federal government has legalized hemp in 2018, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has not yet clearly defined how this industry should be regulated. Of course, they have issued guidelines on the manufacturing and marketing of CBD products, but not all CBD companies observe them when they prioritize profit over quality.

To help bridge this gap, the US Hemp Roundtable, along with other testing laboratories, quality experts, and industry leaders, have joined together to initiate the US Hemp Authority Certification program. This program aims to:

  • Educate hemp farmers as a way to ensure that they are observing the FDA hemp regulations and applying the best farming practices
  • Encourage CBD manufacturers and brand owners to follow GMP (good manufacturing practices) standards and improve their product labels

The objectives of the program benefit not only the hemp growers and CBD business owners who will gain higher credibility, but also the retailers and consumers like us. We can rest assured that companies with this certification have passed a third-party quality audit, which recurs annually since the industry standards and regulations for hemp are not fixed in stone.

At the time of writing, the US Hemp Authority has certified 29 CBD companies. Refer to the list on the official website of the organization to check if the CBD product you’re interested to purchase is from a company that bears this seal of quality and safety.  

Highly Rated by Independent Review Sites and BBB

While many of the top CBD brands proudly display good customer feedback on their websites, some companies cherry-pick it as a means of convincing customers to proceed with their orders. That’s not exactly a reason to distrust a company, but you might not be seeing the whole picture if you would just stick with those reviews.

Therefore, we suggest going through the evaluations posted on independent review sites that focus on natural health and wellness products. The keyword here is “independent” since it tells us that the team behind the review is not affiliated or being paid by CBD brands to recommended their products.

To guide your research on this, here are the qualities of a reliable third-party review site:

Five Star Rating

Unbiased

A good review doesn’t only cover the positive points of a CBD brand or product. Instead, it goes over every important aspect that customers should know. After all, the main goal is to provide information and assistance for those who are looking for CBD products that will satisfy their needs and match their preferences. No CBD company or product is perfect or all-encompassing, so you’d be able to tell right away if the author is exhibiting a bias or undeserved favor toward the subject of the review.

Hands-On

Evaluating a CBD brand or product requires a hands-on approach. The author can’t just rely on what others have said or experienced. Because of this, such reviews tend to contain insights that have not yet been shared by others before since the effects of CBD may vary from person to person.

Comparative

By drawing comparisons between CBD brands or products, the review could better highlight the great qualities or bring attention to the negative side of the subject matter. It also shows the scope of experience that the reviewer has when it comes to the CBD industry and hemp-derived goods.

Open to Feedback

Look for third-party review sites that have a comment section where readers could leave their feedback as well. Go through those posts as well to see if other CBD users would agree or refute the claims of the reviewer. You might also find helpful tips on which brands to check out, what CBD products to try, or how to take a specific CBD product.

Aside from review sites, BBB (Better Business Bureau) can be an efficient way to identify the CBD companies that can be trusted. BBB is a private, non-profit organization wherein North American businesses could get accredited to receive a rating that ranges from A+ to F. The rating signifies the level of “marketplace trust” that BBB has on that business in terms of:

  • Operational practices
  • Marketing strategies
  • Leve of customer support
  • Legal disputes, if any

Consumers may refer to the BBB ratings before making their purchase, but do note that not all CBD companies have been accredited and acknowledged by their system.

Makes No Sweeping Claims

The FDA forbids all CBD companies from making any health claims on the products they sell. Whether it’s done as part of a marketing campaign or as a feature on the product labels, no brand can declare CBD as a cure for any kind of disease or illness.

Some CBD companies try to find a loophole in this FDA regulation by stating that the other ingredients used for a given CBD product provide the supposed health benefit. Such tricks don’t work, however, and there is a high chance that the FDA will issue a warning letter to the involved company once their attention has been called.

That said, a trustworthy CBD company does not make this transgression because they understand why the FDA has established the current CBD regulations. We hope that things will change for the better as researchers continue to study this cannabinoid, but for now, we recommend sticking to CBD companies that carry the standard disclaimers in line with the demands of the FDA.

Demonstrates Transparency in Every Way Possible

Transparency is the name of the game in the CBD industry. Without this, brands will find it hard to convince experts and regular CBD users to try their products. It’s easier said than done though.

The top CBD companies make it a point to share key information to their customers, starting from the ingredients they use to the product labels of the finished good. The general scope of information shared includes:

Ingredients

A good CBD brand clearly states that its sources of hemp are domestic farms that may or may not practice organic farming practices. Those who go the extra mile also state the requirements they demand from farmers to become partners with their brand.

Processes

With regards to the process of extracting CBD oil, trustworthy brands explain what kind of methods have been followed. Though it’s not a rule, most companies in the CBD industry apply extraction methods that do not involve solvents or other potentially harmful substances. Excellent CBD manufacturers also follow GMP standards and establish effective quality controls at every step of the way.

Third-Party Testing

Due to the lack of FDA approval, CBD brands opt to get every batch of their products tested by independent and credible testing laboratories. The results typically indicate the cannabinoid profile, potency of the CBD extract, and presence of harmful substances, such as residual solvents, pesticides, and fungi. Access to the test results should be available through the CBD brand’s website, the product labels, or both.

Through these efforts, CBD brands can showcase how confident they are of the quality and effectiveness of their respective products. Smart customers recognize these indicators of transparency, and in the long run, they serve as one of the foundations for brand loyalty.  

All in All

Being extra cautious when picking a CBD brand to trust is the right way to go. Otherwise, we’d be putting not only our hard-earned cash at risk but also our health and peace of mind.

To find out if a CBD brand is worthy of your trust, remember to:

  • Check if they have been certified by the US Hemp Authority
  • Go over the evaluations of independent review sites, actual CBD users, and BBB
  • Read through their claims and disclaimers on the product label or official website
  • Evaluate how transparent they are in terms of ingredients, processes, and third-party testing

Though it may sound tedious, exerting this level of effort now will help save you from wasting your time, money, and hopes on a product that will never deliver its promises.

Want more helpful tips for CBD beginners? Check out the other posts in our blog, and subscribe to our newsletter below to receive updates whenever we put up new and interesting content for all our readers.

Robert Prescot | Author

Robert is one of our most experienced and knowledgeable writers. He resides in Las Vegas, NV with his wife and two sons. He has 10 years of online marketing experience and has spent several years in the CBD and hemp market.

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