Twelve members of Congress sent a letter to the head of the FDA this week, asking for the agency to release updated guidance on CBD for food, drugs, and cosmetics.
The lawmakers demanded a response by the end of the week, but as of this writing, the FDA has not yet issued new guidelines.
The increasing popularity of high-CBD hemp flower is causing confusion for law enforcement. Because hemp flower looks and smells like higher-THC varieties of cannabis, officials typically can’t confirm that a product is really hemp without a laboratory analysis.
In Indiana’s Hancock County, law enforcement is asking retailers to pull CBD flower from their shelves after two brands tested positive for an unspecified amount of THC. But store owners say that the products they carry are legal, because they are below the 0.3 percent THC level that defines hemp.
Tennessee’s state legislature is considering a bill that will address this confusion by requiring law enforcement to test cannabis on the spot, rather than seizing it before sending samples to a lab.
State representative Jay Reedy hopes that the new regulations will protect hemp farmers from having their legal crops seized.
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New York City is pressing pause on a plan to ban CBD in food and beverages.
Rather than implementing an immediate ban, the city’s Department of Health will begin an education-only phase that will last until June 30th. The DOH now plans to begin enforcing the ban in October.
Ohio lawmakers are considering a bill that will create an agricultural hemp program in the state. If the bill becomes law in its current form, it will also explicitly legalize CBD and clarify that it should not be regulated as part of the state’s medical marijuana program.
Michigan has joined the list of states that are cracking down on CBD in food and beverages.
While it’s legal to possess CBD for personal use in the state, the FDA’s current stance means that the legality of CBD-infused food and beverages are in question.
The state legislature of Maine will soon vote on an emergency bill to legalize CBD edibles. A crackdown on CBD-infused food last month has had a serious impact on the state’s emerging hemp industry.
Lawmakers hope that the bill will help everyone from farmers to retailers to get back to work in time for the 2019 growing season.
Even though the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp as an agricultural product, hemp-related businesses are still having trouble advertising their brands.
One Tucson, Arizona company found that Facebook wouldn’t accept their ads. While this is an ongoing problem for cannabis businesses, Hola Hemp’s food is made with hemp seeds. The FDA has approved hemp seeds for use in food, and the seeds of the plant do not contain cannabinoids like THC or CBD.
And in Fairbanks, Alaska, a CBD company that had purchased ad space on local buses found that their advertisements will soon be removed. The director of transportation said that accepting and posting the ads was a mistake.
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