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Sunset Blue: The Sedative Strain That Will Help You Unwind

Mellow and fragrant, Sunset Blue provides an excellent alternative to a walk in the woods if you’re stuck inside all day.

December 1, 2018

Aroma is one of the strongest memory triggers in nature. The smell of a certain perfume can remind you instantly of a friend who always wore the same scent. Without realizing it, scent can shift your thinking and transport you into a different state of mind. Such is the case with the Sunset Blue cannabis strain, which immediately fills the nose with a sharp pine scent.

A true forest flower, breaking open a bud releases sweet fragrances of blueberry and woodland fruits. Mellow and fragrant, this herb provides an excellent alternative to a walk in the woods if you’re stuck inside all day.

The Sunset Blue High

When relaxation is in order, some cannabis strains are better than others. Those who partake in the herb regularly will likely appreciate the smooth and calming experience the Sunset Blue strain offers her consumers. While perhaps a little slow to kick in, a calm relaxation warms the chest and lungs. This sense of physical ease echoes through the limbs, easing away aches and muscle stiffness.

Excellent for winding down, this flower is the type of plant you’d want around after a long day at work. Unlike many cannabis flowers, however, this strain isn’t the type to promote laziness. Instead, the Sunset Blue high provides a blanketing state of calm that makes it easy to find pleasure in the most mundane activities.

Fair warning, though: this strain might make it difficult to concentrate. While those feeling energetic may have enough attentive powers to push through tasks with this flower, Sunset Blue would make a better selection for anyone hoping to finish up some evening chores or spend the night posted up with a funny movie, friends, and family.

Sunset Blue Strain Background

It’s all about the craft hybrids these days. With a dusted green coloration with hints of purple, it’s easy to see why this strain can quickly garner top-shelf status. A mix of Sunset Sherbet and Blue City Diesel, this decadent flower is a high THC producer, boasting over 23 percent of this compound.

Sunset Sherbet is a contemporary flower that grew in popularity over the course of 2017. A member of the Cookies family line, the plant is a cross between the famous Girl Scout Cookies and Pink Panties. The former is a high-potency hybrid known for its ability to produce both a powerful body relaxation and a strong euphoric emotion. The latter, Pink Panties, is an indica-dominant plant with Kush genetics.

Blue City Diesel is another well-known plant, crossing the Blueberry stain with NYC Diesel. Fragrant, this plant is known to produce a mouth-watering sweet berry taste and aroma. Its offspring, Sunset Bule, is offered by Northwest Cannabis Solutions, the plant is considered an indica-dominant hybrid. Expect a tight bud structure from this plant, with a frosted trichome coating and wiley orange pistillate hairs.

Sunset Blue Strain Benefits

The cannabis plant is a growing pharmacy. The herb can produce over 400 different phytochemicals, and early science suggests that many of them have medical value. However, thanks to decades of legal restrictions on growing and cultivating the herb, few cannabis compounds have been studied with enough fervor to make meaningful medical claims.

Still, just because they haven’t been found yet doesn’t mean that the benefits consumers describe are not real.

As a high-THC cannabis flower, the Sunset Blue strain may be helpful to those who struggle with nausea, vomiting, and the inability to maintain appetite. Already, synthetic versions of THC are available to some patients battling with these symptoms. This man-made version is available as a pharmaceutical drug. Sunset Blue, however, provides a natural source of the psychoactive compound.

Slightly sedative in nature, Sunset Blue may also be a valuable selection for those searching for a little extra help falling asleep. Relaxing without overpowering the consumer, this strain has a knack for easing consumers into a calm and relaxed state.

Like all high-THC strains, there are a few words of caution before partaking in Sunset Blue. In low to moderate doses, THC has been found to reduce stress and ease anxiety. In larger doses, however, the mind-bending plant compound may actually trigger more stress and discomfort. For best results with Sunset Blue, enjoy this herb in moderation.

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Cannabis

Why Independent Third-Party Cannabis Testing Is Important

November 16, 2020

During cultivation, the cannabis plant acts like a sponge. It absorbs everything it is exposed to, from pesticides, nutrients, and heavy metals present in the soil. For these reasons, it is essential that reputable and reliable third-party labs carry out cannabis testing to assure safety and efficacy of the product.

Lab testing of cannabis products is an essential part of the regulated market’s supply chain. It detects offensive chemicals or contaminants that can lead to adverse health effects when consumed, while additionally providing cultivators and retailers with efficacious cannabinoid and terpene profiles of legal cannabis products.

In Canada’s regulated market, batch release quality control testing is required for potency and product safety, so it is necessary to measure substances like pesticides, mycotoxins, bacteria, and molds. Unfortunately, reports on potency and contaminants can vary from lab to lab, while recalls of contaminated products threaten consumer trust of legal products.

Sigma Analytical Services is a full-service pesticide, elemental, molecular, genetic, and pathogen analysis laboratory for cannabis, hemp, and cannabis-derived products. It delivers reliable science for cannabis products to the cannabis industry and cannabis consumers.

Cannabis Aficionado spoke with Ashton Abrahams, co-founder and COO of Sigma Analytical Services, to learn more about the importance of cannabis testing and Sigma’s strict processes.

Cannabis Aficionado: Tell me about your entrepreneurial journey to cannabis.

I’m a serial entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in starting and growing several successful ventures. In 2017, when Canada was in the process of legalizing cannabis, my partner and I saw an opportunity to focus on a different side of the new cannabis industry — ancillary testing and quality reassurance requirements. We knew there would be new products in the market, and they would all require testing. So, we started a testing lab that focused on cannabis and cannabis products, and this is how Sigma started.

What sets Sigma apart from other testing labs?

We want to ensure products available in this new market are efficacious and safe, and ensure the levels of both remain consistent. Sigma is the only GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) certified, cannabis-focused lab in Canada and the only cannabis-focused lab with cross-continental operations. We developed and validated our methods back in 2018 and 2019, so we are the frontrunner in Cannabis 2.0 product testing and are set up to test a comprehensive list of cannabis products — including flower, edibles, beverages, and topicals.

Sigma also has validated methods for quantifying and testing 16 cannabinoids and 43 terpenes — one of the highest in the market — and our analytical and microbiology tests are compliant with Health Canada, EU, and US Pharmacopeia.

Additionally, Sigma was awarded the Best Cannabis Lab/Testing Facility in Canada at the Grow Up 2019 awards.

Inside Sigma Analytical Services’ state-of-the-art lab.

What need does Sigma fill in the global cannabis industry?

Sigma brings reliable science that is already available in food and pharma to the cannabis industry, its products, and consumers.

Cannabis, food, and pharma share certain quality requirements. However, there is a big difference: in terms of quality assurance, food and pharma have decades of testing experience, while cannabis is a new industry, and the science is still being developed.

What kind of samples do you test?

We have developed and validated testing methods for many different types of cannabis products, from traditional dried flower and oils to Cannabis 2.0 products , such as concentrates, beverages, edibles, and topicals. From a testing standpoint, each and every one of these products is different and can have a different matrix. In turn, we develop a testing method for each one.

What should customers be looking for to see reassurance that a product’s been tested?

Make sure their products are purchased through legal channels. It’s the regulatory bodies’ responsibility to make sure the products launched in the market are not just tested, but tested specifically by qualified labs.

Moldy cannabis is a problem in legal markets and there are numerous reports of Health Canada product recalls after customers discovered moldy flower. Can you talk to us about how you test for these pathogens?

From day one, instead of using the traditional culture-based method, Sigma has tested for mould and all microbial contamination using a newer technology called qPCR (quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction). When we first started it in late 2018, nobody was familiar with it in the cannabis industry, so we had to take time to explain to our clients that it was a better, more reliable, and faster process. In the last six months, however, we have seen a huge shift in attitude. Not only have the cannabis producers accepted qPCR, but more cannabis labs are starting to use the technology to test for microbial contaminations.

Moldy cannabis. PHOTO | LabRoots

What are some of the most exciting developments in cannabis testing?

Using qPCR for microbial contamination is very new for the cannabis industry. We’re happy and excited about it because we see the benefits and we hope the whole cannabis industry embraces it.

Secondly, the challenges of formulating, developing, and testing new products. The developments in the past six months have been really promising.

Thirdly, discovering more about the cannabis plant and what ends up in cannabis products is really an exciting development. As we progress, we are sure to learn more about the effects of cannabinoids and terpenes.

What’s your pinnacle vision of cannabis testing?

There are two sides to it. There is a regulatory side, and there is the testing side. On the regulatory side, it’s about what needs to be tested, and how it needs to be tested.

A very important part of the quality assurance initiative for cannabis is ensuring the testing sample is representative of that batch. There are different factors in place. Is that batch homogeneous or not? Are the characteristics consistent or not? Cannabis is a plant. It’s an agricultural product. It’s not something that’s coming out of a machine, so we cannot expect all of the plants to have exactly the same characteristics. I believe one key is to limit the size of the batch. Other jurisdictions have clearly defined regulations. For example, in California, it clearly states that each batch cannot be larger than fifty pounds. In the Canadian regulations, there is no definition at all.

Secondly, labs need to get more serious. Some labs are testing cannabis products with outdated instruments or unvalidated methods, meaning their results cannot be truly accurate or reliable. Cannabis labs cannot use a 15-year-old second-hand instrument and expect to get the same results as pharmaceutical labs that use the best, most advanced instruments. Some people might think that testing cannabis products is not as important as pharmaceutical products, but it is just as important.

Cannabis has a very complex matrix which requires complex testing methods. Not all labs have good enough or validated methods. However, I’m optimistic that it’s a matter of years, maybe between five to ten, for cannabis testing to get there.

How is Sigma helping to foster the growth of a responsible and safe legal cannabis industry?

I think everyone active in the cannabis industry has a responsibility to make sure they are doing a good job and providing safe and efficacious products to the consumer. That’s because, if the consumer is not happy with what they’re getting from us, it will translate into unhappiness with the whole legalized framework.

Finally, what’s next for Sigma?

We are going through some expansion at our headquarters in Toronto and we’re about to acquire a lab in British Columbia, which will be our second lab in Canada. Additionally, we have a joint venture in Colombia and are setting up the first GMP certified cannabis lab in South America.

We are also becoming more involved with helping develop formulations for new products, and testing them, especially for the producers that follow GMP requirements either in pursuit of higher quality or for international cannabis markets.

We also recently received our GMP clearance from the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (“TGA”). The approval designates Sigma as an approved testing laboratory for Canadian companies to introduce their products into the Australian cannabis market.

Mellow and fragrant, Sunset Blue provides an excellent alternative to a walk in the woods if you’re stuck inside all day. ]]>