Boulder company develops way to test potency of marijuana instantly

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BOULDER, Colo. -- A Boulder company has created a quick, convenient way to measure marijuana potency.

“You put the sample on the viewing window here. You cover the viewing window with the black cap to block out any other ambient light,” said Matt Kaplan with Sage Analytics. “We’re gonna hit dry sample on our touch screen here. Now it’s going to calculate potency.”

It only takes a few seconds to get the results.

The device tests THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, CBD, the medicine within the marijuana, and CBN, the freshness of the THC.

It can measure solid products and even extracts, which is a base ingredient in edibles.

“We’re trying to create a new way of doing business in the marijuana industry where you can actually get instant feedback about what you’re putting in your body,” Kaplan said.

Kaplan’s Sage Analytics partnered with the University of Mississippi, which is the only federally licensed marijuana research facility in the country.

“We use spectro analysis, a spectrometer in essence, which then will look down at the molecular level,” he said.

The technology is FDA approved and has been used in the pharmaceutical industry for more than a decade. Kaplan said it’ll benefit the growing marijuana industry.

“We have 18 different labs in the state of Colorado and not all labs are doing testing the same way,” Kaplan said. “What we’re hoping to do is create a standardized way of testing.”

It’ll help growers, regulators, dispensaries, law enforcement and consumers.

“They know what they’re putting in their body, they have information and awareness and we help provide consumer safety,” he said.

The device is the size of a shoe box, but they’re working on a smaller, hand-held version for police officers.

Kaplan said the device only requires a little training.