FDA Acknowledges CBD Demand. So What’s Next?

Last week, Dr. Stephen Hahn, the newly appointed commissioner of the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, stated there is no denying that individuals want their CBD and more importantly that it would be foolish for his administration to try and stop people from using CBD. He told the crowd at an event:

“We’re not going to be able to say you can’t use these products. It’s a fool’s errand to even approach that. We have to be open to the fact that there might be some value to these products, and certainly Americans think that’s the case. But we want to get them information to make the right decisions.”

Dr. Stephen Hahn, FDA Commissioner

Hemp and all of its derivatives were made federally legal by the 2018 Farm Bill. However, the regulation of the industry has been an outstanding question that has yet to be addressed. The FDA created a working group after a public meeting and subsequent comment period in mid-2019. The agency commented in November of last year that they had not seen enough scientific studies or data to support recognizing CBD as generally safe to consume. This makes sense as before the Farm Bill there was not funding or even a concentrated focus on CBD studies. It’s pretty hard to get steam behind costly studies for a substance that wasn’t seen as totally legal just two years ago.

With all of this under consideration it is safe to say CBD regulation is still a ways away. Rightfully so, the FDA has been focusing more on cracking down on companies that make unfounded claims in their marketing and packaging. Some of these companies also try to provide specific dosage information to their patients which is not warranted. Still to this day the only drug that has been approved by the FDA is Epidiolex, a prescription drug for treatment of severe forms of epilepsy.

At Hemp Crate Co, we are extremely focused on compliance which is why we do not make medical claims regarding CBD. We have heard from literally hundreds of our customers that have let us know how CBD has helped them with pain management, sleep issues, and general calming of their anxiety and this makes us feel fantastic! But until we have specific products from our partners that have been certified by the FDA we will continue to not make claims and also not to provide specific dosage information for an individual. Instead we like to provide more generic information such as how to tell how much CBD you get in your tincture dropper.

USDA Drops DEA Testing Facility Requirement

Image courtesy of Tweedle Farms

In related government agencies relaxing their position news, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it was amending its strict testing rules for 2020 hemp farmers and cultivators. Previously, the USDA in conjuction with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA – enough with the acronyms already!) put forth legislation that would require all hemp growers to submit the upcoming season’s crop to DEA testing facilities which has incredibly stringent guidelines. One of the many complaints from over 4,700 comments that were received during the public comment period was that if a crop sampling tested ‘hot’ (being over Federally Legal Limit of >0.3% THC) the entire batch of crop would be disposed by the DEA. Also, the DEA does not have enough of the facilities to service the over supply that is in the CBD market. Even worse, the DEA does not have facilities in all 50 states so that brings into questions of cross state and tribal rules that need to be considered.

During a meeting of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture Greg Ibach, undersecretary for the USDA, stated that:

We’re going to provide more options and greater flexibility for states that are working with producers that need to provide more options for disposal or more commonly accepted ways to destroy the crop on the farm. There were a lot of comments about sampling, as well, so we’re open to that discussion to gain greater understanding.

Greg Ibach, Undersecretary USDA

What does this all mean?

It means that government agencies are starting to understand the wild demand there is for CBD. It means that instead of trying to hinder farmers, they want to find ways to work with them. They are listening to two groups of people right now: farmers and end-customers. This is great to see as often government agencies can stifle growth with unintended legislation that packs its punch in the fine print. Hemp was legalized in 2018 for a reason; farmers wanted access to the crop and many customers of hemp wanted the end products. Hopefully, 2020 will continue to be a great progressive year for hemp and all of its derivatives. It is certainly pointing in that direction.

This article was written by the staff at Hemp Crate Co.— the top-rated CBD Subscription Box company on the market. Hemp Crate Co curates only the best CBD products and delivers them to your doorstep, every month.

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