Validated quantitative cannabis profiling for Canadian regulatory compliance – Cannabinoids, aflatoxins, and terpenes.

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In response to the Canadian federal government’s Cannabis Tracking and Licensing System compliance standards, a quantitative method was created for cannabis analysis, and validated using Eurachem V.2 (2014) guidelines. Cannabinol, cannabidiol, cannabigerol, cannabichromene, cannabidiolic acid, cannabigerolic acid, Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, and Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinolic acid A were all analysed by scheduled multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) via LC-MS/MS and isotope dilution. In addition, aflatoxins B1, B2, G1, and G2 were also analysed by scheduled MRM via LC-MS/MS and matrix matched calibration curves in order to achieve the reporting limits (≤2 μg kg-1) set out by the European Pharmacopoeia. The LODs/LOQs were 0.50/1.7, 2.0/6.7, 0.59/2.0, and 0.53/1.8 μg kg-1, for B1, B2, G1, and G2 respectively. Thirty one terpenes were analysed by selected reaction monitoring via GC-MS/MS and isotope dilution using β-myrcene-d6 as a surrogate. All quantitative analyses can be accomplished using less than 1 g of material, with minimal solvent and consumable use, on low resolution instruments in less than 30 min of instrument time. Of important note is this method’s power of selectivity, working ranges, and lack of need for extraction consumables such as SPE or QuEChERS, thereby minimising analytical costs and time.

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