Confusion About CBD Sales
CBD products are spreading like wildfire across the nation since the passing of the Farm Bill Act of 2018. This past weekend I was at my local coffee shop and noticed they were offering CBD infusedshots for coffee, tea and juice. Obviously this isn't too crazy, as everyone needs relief (if you ask me) and the cannabis plant has so much to offer to us humans (and well, mammals, as all mammals have an endocannabinoid system).
Across the nation many communities are seeing an injection of CBD product availability--at vape and tobacco shops, at groceries and cafes, or even online with big retailers like Amazon and Target for raw CBD oil or infused lotions.
Even with the rescheduling of the versatile cannabinoid CBD, sales have yet to be regulated by the FDA, and in turn regulated for retail space. We've seen some states set guidelines, like California who released a statement last summer telling retailers to wait until regulation and laws are ready to implement. But the movement cannot be stopped when it's beneficial to the populations health and well being, and many retailers have ignored this memo.
Therefore this has bred a ton of confusion about who can sell this stuff. (The Farm Bill of 2018 set in stone the availability and regulation in cultivating hemp, not sales.) There are reports of local authorities pulling products from retailers shelves, or enacting bans on possession of CBD products in California, Ohio, New York and Texas.
Lawmakers in Texas and California are often in opposition, but they’re both pushing bipartisan legislation to sidestep federal law and allow sales of the compound found in hemp and marijuana. Republicans and Democrats in Congress also are urging the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to change its stance.
Resolving the confusion can’t come quick enough for Jonathan Eppers, who makes Vybes, a popular CBD oil-infused beverage. California health inspectors raided his Los Angeles warehouse in January and impounded $100,000 worth of the drink.
Eppers said about 50 California retailers have since dropped his product and he’s moved production to Texas. He estimates lost sales, legal costs and relocation expenses have cost him at least $500,000.
“What is going on is unbelievable and asinine,” Eppers said. “They put us in this state of limbo that’s costing us.”
Eppers and CBD fans are mystified by the legal insecurity. After all, they say, retailers in California and nine other states that have broadly legalized marijuana sell edibles and other products that get people high, though pot is illegal under federal law. U.S. officials generally have taken a hands-off approach in states where pot is legal.
This back and forth comes from the FDA failing to regulate this exploding substance efficiently for the market. Due to this, many lawmakers are pushing for bipartisan legislation to sidestep federal law--or just calling for the FDA to approve and regulate CBD products.
The FDA says CBD can’t be added to food or sold as a dietary supplement because officials haven’t determined if it’s safe or effective for other conditions.
Just last week the FDA announced that it will hold a public hearing in May to gather more information.