The U.S. Hemp Authority Certification Program is the hemp industry’s initiative to provide high standards, best practices, and self-regulation, giving confidence to consumers and law enforcers that hemp products are safe and legal. This program was funded by the U.S. Hemp Roundtable and developed by a variety of industry-leading firms, top-tier testing laboratories, and quality assessors to create guidance for growers and processors of hemp.
In March of 2019, Bluebird Botanicals officially received its U.S. Hemp Authority seal, becoming one of the first 13 hemp companies to do so.
The purpose of this certification is twofold: to educate hemp farmers and processors about good manufacturing practices established by the FDA and good agricultural practices, and to indicate to consumers and law enforcers which hemp products they can trust.
Marielle Weintraub, Ph.D., president of the U.S. Hemp Authority, explained, “As the market for hemp-derived products undergoes rapid growth, it is critically important for us to signal to the world that we intend to act responsibly. Quality assurance and safety must come first, and that’s why we set off on this journey. Creating these standards was a long journey, but after thousands of pages of public and stakeholder input and countless hours of hard work, we are thrilled to announce our first awardees.”
Bluebird Botanicals has long led the industry in quality and transparency. With its unique online batch database, customers can view third-party lab tests for every single product that leaves Bluebird’s facilities. However, as more CBD manufacturers enter the marketplace with untested and potentially unsafe products, Bluebird has recognized the importance of formally certifying its quality through the U.S. Hemp Authority.
“The most important certifications are oriented to consumer safety. I believe everyone deserves the right to know what they are putting into their body,” says Amanda Bowman, Bluebird’s Quality Assurance Manager. “With an endless amount of different brands flooding the market, it is overwhelming to understand which ones are truly putting in the effort to create robust quality systems and thoroughly test their products. Given this ambiguity in the industry, professional auditing can be a valuable resource to verify that brands do have these quality systems in place, ensuring that consumers are provided with a safe and trustworthy product. Our dedication to our customers is why Bluebird strives to go above and beyond when it comes to the quality and safety of our products.”
Those wishing to receive the U.S. Hemp Authority certification must undergo a physical audit inspection conducted by Where Food Comes From, a provider of certification and verification services to the food industry. For hemp processors, this audit includes inspecting personnel and training, physical facilities, quality management systems, supplier qualifications, testing procedures, lab equipment and utensils, production and process control safety measures, packaging and labeling, and storage and distribution.