By: Eric Vengroff, Contributor,



Some day in the future, you may find yourself wondering ‘how strong was that cannabis I just bought, smoked or otherwise ingested or acquired.  I imagine most people use some sort of internal gauge that ranges somewhere between ‘not strong enough’ to ‘I’d better find a chair…’.  And how about the breakdown between THC and CBD?  Is this of interest to anyone?  Will this batch of cookies help me with my back pain during the day or will it put me to sleep?  I would think that people, other than just scientists, regulators and assorted cannabis nerds might need to know.

In earlier days, the matter may have been rendered academic, since no cheap, easy-to-use THC analysis system existed, and if it did, the diagnostic equipment might have taken up my entire basement.   Theoretically, I could have boasted to my friends that some bushweed I picked up from a guy in a puffy coat down the street was really some highly exotic strain that my cousin brought back from his trip to Columbia; that was until they sampled it; then it would no longer possible to deceive them.

When at the recent U.S. Cannabis Conference & Expo Miami, I stopped by the booth of St. Petersburg, FL, based CB Scientific, and purchased one of their THC and CBD detection kits.

When I returned home, I decided to give it a try.  Opening the box, the contents appear straight-forward.  There is enough material in the kit to conduct 3 THC tests and 3 CBD tests.


I decided to run the test on a random sample of Qwerkle -honestly, Mom, I have no idea where it came from.

To be clear, I have no particular affinity to this strain.  I was told it was an ‘evening’ strain, emphasis on back and body pain, inflammation, and muscle pain.  On one website, the product is described as an Indica-dominant 50/50 Indica-Sativa hybrid.   On another website, CBD content was listed at 13.0%, 30% Sativa and 70% Indica.   This strain does not appear to be widely grown, so perhaps disparities in different batches are being reflected.  What was in this one?


I ran the THC test first.  The process was extremely simple.  I took a small amount of product, as instructed, and added a small amount of the contents in the red-capped vial into the test container.  Ten minutes later, I got the results shown below:

Although the shades of red that indicated are very close to one another, especially in comparison to the sample, but it looks like the product contained somewhere around 10-12% THC.

The CBD test was just as easy to perform as the THC test, but the results were a bit harder to gauge.

The test vial liquid turned a shade of violet, perhaps with a tinge of green from the test subject.  I may not be the best with colors, but I’d say I got a product with about 1.5% CBD.   From my perspective, this seems a bit disappointing in light of previous statements about the strain being one of high-CBD.  This statement is not intended to disparage any producer, or to impugn the results of the test itself; but it is interesting to compare tangible evidence versus claims of potency and intent.

The THC and CBD combo test works with cannabis buds, extracts and oils.  It is available from  There is a similar test kit that is designed to test THC concentration in edibles as well.  The cost of the kit is $49.95 and shipping is free for orders over $99 in the continental U.S.