July 2022

LGC launches free app-based cannabis testing training to support cannabis testing laboratories in their learning

A breakthrough in training for the cannabis testing industry has been launched this week – thanks to a collaboration between experts in the National Measurement Laboratory (NML), hosted at LGC, and the reference materials division at LGC Standards.

The rapid expansion of the global cannabis industry has led to sharply increased demand for safety and purity testing, but analytical laboratories are reporting a severe shortage of experienced cannabis testing staff.

LGC’s analytical measurement scientists have developed CannLearn, a free, easy-to-use app-based microlearning, to provide training in a range of topics, including:

  • why testing/ screening of cannabis is required;
  • quality assurance, including method validation, measurement uncertainty, traceability and quality control;
  • laboratory set-up, including contamination control;
  • health & safety.

Dr Kelly Cheshire, Global Product Manager for cannabis, Dr Ehrenstorfer, LGC, said, “We saw this as an opportunity to help. 

“After speaking with our customers and a number of experts within the industry, we were aware that one of their ‘pain points’ was around experience in the cannabis field.

“The question was: ‘How can untrained staff continue their learning in an environment that doesn’t always afford the time to pursue this?’”

Partly due to the pandemic, and partly to accommodate the new generation of ‘digital natives’ working in laboratories, the NML was also looking for novel means of delivering training that would minimise the time scientists spend away from day-to-day work. 

“Feedback from customers indicated that recruiting staff with the required cannabis knowledge and skills can be a challenge, and that introductory level training would be welcomed,” adds Vicki Barwick, the NML’s Head of Commercial Training.

CannLearn helps users self-navigate through five structured learning modules at their own pace, and via a range of devices. Feedback from a pilot study last year was positive, with cannabis laboratory managers describing it as “a great tool for people new to the industry.”