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PathogenDx, Icon Farms To Collaborate In The Development Of Hemp-Specific Testing Standards

Javier Hasse

PathogenDx, an Arizona-based pathogen-testing technology company, announced this week a strategic partnership with hemp operator and manufacturer Icon Farms.

PathogenDx will provide DNA-based customized pathogen testing in order to help standardize and implement microbial safety protocols across a comprehensive, emerging hemp industry and rapidly increasing supply chain. At a time where hemp safety standards are lagging behind hemp production and human consumption, this new set of standards is vital.

The Icon Farms and PathogenDx standard in testing hemp cultivation sites, facilities and products will:

  • Establish company benchmarks for technology processes and sophisticated machinery to manufacture commercial hemp correctly.
  • Move beyond traditional microbial testing via petri dish, which can take up to three days to show results. A three-day test result waiting time is too long for hemp producers. Crops need to be harvested and moved into manufacturing. PathogenDx yields results in just six hours.
  • Utilize testing that is exclusive to hemp.
  • Detect and identify a variety of dangerous pathogens in a single test. PathogenDx’s advanced microarray testing platform can identify 50 varieties at once. 
  • Allow testing to be conducted onsite at hemp cultivation and production facilities so producers can pinpoint the source of contamination and immediately begin remediation.
  • Ensure that at every step only clean hemp products are passed through the supply chain.

“Icon Farms’ rigorous emphasis on safety and quality-check protocols and PathogenDx’s ultra-rapid method of testing delivers results in a fraction of the time and the cost, but with much better resolution and accuracy to protect consumers and patients, making the partnership truly significant for the hemp consumer,” a spokesperson for Icon Farms explained.

“Based on an accelerated rate of growth in a rapidly expanding hemp industry, farmers and operators will ultimately have to conform to a standardization of safe hemp production and testing for pesticides and solvents they currently aren't required to report," Icon Farms President Jordan Gielchinsky said. "We have set ourselves far apart by integrating a sophisticated network of uniquely qualified hemp producers that adhere to our strict quality standards.”

Milan Patel, co-founder and CEO of PathogenDx said, “If you are only testing the end product in a lab, then you have no idea where the contamination is occurring. Given the persistent quality, safety and contamination challenges we have all seen, it is great to see the team at Icon Farms take a proactive position in upleveling the quality across the entire supply chain.”

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