The 'organic debate' is one that will no doubt rage on indefinitely, but where CBD is concerned choosing organic is vitally important. Organic oils are produced to the highest standards and in an industry that is very much self-regulated (Novel Food regulation begins in 2021), this gives a rare guarantee of quality.\n\nWhen you buy certified organic CBD, you know that these standards have been met:\n\nSoil and seed quality - The soil used to grow organic hemp is free from man-made chemicals and toxins. The hemp seeds used to grow the organic hemp plants are untreated and 100% natural.\nNo harmful chemicals added - No growth enhancers, stimulators or hormones are used to grow organic hemp. No inorganic herbicides and pesticides are used during the growing process.\nTruly natural conditions - The hemp grows under natural conditions, i.e. water and sunlight, without any form of artificial light or radiation.\nNo animal testing - Organic CBD oil products (including skin care products) are not tested on animals.\nAn oficial organic certification from a relevant body confirms that all the above (and more) have been adhered to. It is these standards and the lack of regulation that means non-organic CBD oils have potential pitfalls, such as the possibility of being contaminated with harmful chemicals such as pesticides, herbicides, medications and hormones.\nThe health benefits of organic\n\nAs well as an assurance of quality there are also some health benefits linked to consuming organic products. A French study entitled 'Association of Frequency of Organic Food Consumption with Cancer Risk' published its results in October of 2018. The question that the study posed was whether or not there was an association between an organic diet and cancer risk. They monitored nigh-on 69,000 adults for a total of five years. The results? Those that consumed high levels of organic food had a significant reduction (a whopping 24%) in the risk of cancer. Several years earlier, in 2014, Newcastle University published a study in the British Journal of Nutrition that found organic crops to contain as much as 60% more key antioxidants than crops not grown through organic processes. But not only were the organic crops nutrient-richer, but they also had lower amounts of toxic metals such as cadmium, which is highly toxic in of itself. And in 2016, a study once again conducted by Newcastle University and published in the British Journal of Nutrition found that both organic milk and meat contained circa 50% more omega-3 than non-organic equivalents. But what makes this even more fascinating is the fact that this wasn't just one study – it was a collation of the findings of 196 papers on milk and 67 papers on meat.\n\nStanford University did something similar in 2018 by examining 240 studies on organic foods conducted between 1996 and 2011. Once again, nutrition levels were found to be higher in organic crops. “Crops likes apples, strawberries, grapes, tomatoes, milk, carrots and grains organic produce has 10 to 30 percent higher levels of several nutrients, including vitamin C, antioxidants and phenolic acid in most studies”. Plus, and probably more importantly, it was overwhelmingly found that consuming organic food drastically reduces the amount of pesticides, herbicides, chemical and antibiotics that will go into your body. And – as you're probably aware – greater consumption of such harmful compounds can increase the chances of adverse health effects.\nThe environmental benefits of organic\n\nNon-organic food and produce are synonymous with the use of pesticides, herbicides and chemicals. But it is not only our health that is negatively impacted upon by them – but it is also the world around us.\nThis quote from a study released in March 2009 in the Interdisciplinary Toxicology Journal put it more succinctly than we could: “...pesticide use comes at significant cost. Pesticides have contaminated almost every part of your environment. Pesticide residues are found in soil and air, and in surface and groundwater across the countries, and urban pesticide uses contribute to the problem. Pesticide contamination poses significant risks to the environment and non-target organisms ranging from beneficial soil microorganisms to insects, plants, fish, and birds...”.\nPhytoremediation\n\nYou may already be aware that the extract used in CBD products come from hemp. Hemp is a form of cannabis that is low in THC. The hemp plant has some spectacular qualities and one of these is called Phytoremediation: “Phytoremediation is a bioremediation process that uses various types of plants to remove, transfer, stabilize, and\/or destroy contaminants in the soil and groundwater.” If harmful compounds such as pesticides, herbicides and the like are used to grow hemp, then it is highly likely that the hemp will mop up these dangerous chemicals, which may then find their way into your CBD oil.\nOrganic certifications\nWhat does 'organic' actually mean? It is essential to understand the specific requirements of organic produce in the UK and within the EU. According to the Soil Association 'organic' means: - Fewer pesticides. - No artificial colours and preservatives. - Always free range. - No routine use of antibiotics. - No GM ingredients. But what does this translate to in terms of specific requirements for the UK? - Minimum of all ingredients from organic farming (min. 70%). All Soil Association certified products must show the organic percentage on the product packaging. - No GMO, synthetic fragrances, colours, petroleum derivatives, polymers, parabens or other potentially harmful substances. - Ingredients must be obtained through simple physical or chemical processes with no use of synthetic molecules. - No animal testing at all.\nFor the EU (Ecocert): - A minimum of 95% of all ingredients must be of a natural origin. - A minimum of 10% of the total product by weight must be organic. - A maximum of 5% of synthetic content (all of which must belong to the harmless synthetic ingredients list). - All processes must be audited and Eco-certified. - Synthetic substances such as fragrances, colours, petroleum derivatives, polymers, parabens and other harmful chemicals are forbidden. - No animal testing at all. - Animal products that do not negatively affect the ecosystem, nor directly question animals' lives are permitted.\nFor the European Organic Certification (Bio stamp): In order to receive the European Organic Certification or Bio Stamp the farmer needs to follow a high standard of production rules: - Minimum of all ingredients from organic farming (min. 95%). - Plants need to be nourished through the soil ecosystem (hydroponic cultivation is not allowed). - Limited use of non-synthetic fertilisers. - Restricted use of pesticides. - Chemically-synthesised allopathic medicinal products strictly restricted. - Plant-based preparations can be used as compost. - Organic stock farming follows criteria to secure a high level of animal welfare. From examining other organic standards across the world, it is evident that both the UK and EU have some of the most stringent organic requirements across the globe. This means that when you buy organic products that have been manufactured to UK or EU organic standards, you can rest assured that it will be of the highest quality. And, for these reasons, it is exceptionally rare to find legitimate, certified organic CBD oil manufactured from certified organic hemp.\nWhere to buy organic CBD?\n\nCertified organic CBD is not easy to come by. We currently stock two brands that have both achieved certification: Biopurus - is a Czech producer of organic food oils, including whole-plant CBD oil. They carry the European organic certification and follow the mantra of “small is beautiful”. We are proud to be exclusive retailers of Biopurus CBD oils and they’re one of our customers’ favourite brands. Whoever tries it tends to stick to it. BioBloom - is a better-known brand from the Austrian-Hungarian border. They’re particularly well-certified: they carry the Austrian and Hungarian Bio certificates along with the UK certificate from the Biodynamic Association. On top of that, they’re certified by the patient association Arge-Canna with the AC quality seal. This is also a whole-plant CBD oil which is also rich in CBDa.\nFinal thoughts\nOur message is simple: Go organic. Next time you're squeezing a few drops of CBD oil under your tongue or sipping on a cup of refreshing and invigorating hemp tea, you can be safe in the knowledge that what is going into your body is natural, clean and good for you.\n\nJoin us to get updates and special deals monthly:\n\n \n\n
for the Ageless Team
We are a small but mighty team of experienced natural health researchers. We follow strict selection criteria and test everything we retail: from ground-breaking food supplements to natural skincare products. Our main area of expertise is CBD.