NIST CannaQAP Homepage




On behalf of the Chemical Sciences Division (CSD) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), we would like to thank you for your interest in our new Cannabis Program. As part of the larger Cannabis Program, a Quality Assurance Program (CannaQAP) is being developed to help Cannabis (hemp and marijuana) and forensic laboratories demonstrate and improve measurement comparability and/or competence. Participation in CannaQAP will also inform NIST about the measurement capabilities within the hemp and cannabis communities and assist in the design and characterization of Cannabis reference materials.

A QAP can be viewed as a perpetual interlaboratory study mechanism that is akin to a proficiency testing (PT) scheme but without the pass/fail grade. CSD has provided QAPs to various analytical laboratory communities for over 3 decades as a trusted tool to evaluate an individual laboratory’s performance. All results from QAP studies are peer-reviewed and made publicly available as published NIST Internal Reports (IRs), however the identities of individual laboratories are anonymized and known only to them and NIST. Some participants of past QAP studies have elected to use their results to demonstrate their laboratory’s purported capabilities.

Exercise 1 of CannaQAP will focus on the determination of cannabinoids in hemp oils. Participants may elect to measure up to 17 selected cannabinoids as well as total THC and total CBD. Each participant will receive two different hemp oil samples and will be asked to report triplicate results using measurement procedures and calculations normally performed in their laboratories. In addition, participants will also be asked to identify the type of sample preparation and analytical methods employed in their testing to facilitate conclusions about potential method bias. Exercise 1 will be available for signup through August 31, 2020.

Each exercise within this program will be free of charge to laboratories, but participants will be required to pay shipping costs in order to receive samples by providing a shipping account number (UPS, FedEx, or USPS only) upon registration. The identity of participants will be kept confidential unless a laboratory elects to include their name on the public list of participants.

If you have any suggestions or questions regarding CannaQAP or other Cannabis projects at NIST, please email your request to the Cannabis/CannaQAP Team at

We look forward to your participation in this and future CannaQAP exercises. Please forward this email to any of your contacts that may be interested in participating.

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