What Bill Legalized CBD?

Do you already know your member? Search for your member in a list to see their contact information. This bill allows the use of hemp, cannabidiol (i.e., CBD), and has the status Filed. Currently, the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) position is that CBD products cannot be sold as dietary supplements. The “CBD Product Safety and Standardization Act” would help address a regulatory gap that hemp stakeholders have been putting pressure on the FDA to resolve.

Kathleen Rice (Democrat of New York), Morgan Griffith (Republican of Virginia), Angie Craig (Democrat of Minnesota) and Dan Crenshaw (Republican of Texas) are among the sponsors of this bill. Natural Products Insider, part of the Informa Markets division of Informa PLC, is impatient with the slowness of the United States in regulating hemp and hemp-derived CBD products. In response, Congress has re-introduced legislation to force the FDA to approve CBD and all other cannabinoids and terpenes in hemp (without THC) for use in dietary supplements. Introduced by Oregon Democrat Kurt Schrader and Virginia Republican Morgan Griffith, with five Republican and 12 Democratic co-sponsors, the bill would simply subject hemp to all other regulations, like any other dietary supplement, subject to the introduction of new dietary ingredients (NDI), Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and Labeling and Marketing Provisions.

It would maintain the definition of hemp as a cannabis plant with less than 0.3% THC, the cannabinoid that induces euphoria in the plant, which is solely responsible for the difference between hemp and marijuana. The NDI aspect is a heavy effort, one could count on to radically reduce the number of brands on the market. But certainty would be a boon for companies that have the means to produce quality hemp or spend six large amounts to carry out toxicological tests. For producers who have done toxicology work, the riches could be innumerable. That sentiment is echoed by a long-established supplement trade group, the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), which represents large supplement companies that offer barriers and limits that circumscribe the space for “responsible” supplements.

Julia Gustafson, vice president of government relations at CRN, expressed frustration with the FDA and hopes that this bill will change the agency's thinking about hemp and hemp CBD. Concerns remain about the fate of the bill, as some members of Congress are considered to prefer to let the FDA take the lead. However, impatience for the FDA's position has led directly to this Congressional action. The coalition, in a press release, lamented the “regulatory uncertainty” that persists over the inclusion of hemp and hemp-derived CBD in ingestible products. According to the coalition, trade and investment in the CBD “have come to a standstill, harming job creation and economic opportunities for farmers and small businesses.

Michael McGuffin, president of the American Herbal Products Association and a coalition partner, clarified the industry's intense desire for Congress to step in now. He has long maintained that hemp and the CBD in hemp should simply be treated like any other botanical supplement on the market. Gustafson, from CRN, hopes that this bill will boost FDA efforts, focusing on the goal of expanding consumer access to hemp, CBD and other cannabinoids and terpenes. Hemp Roundtable has created a portal where interested parties can contact their representatives in Congress and encourage them to co-sponsor and support the passage of this bill. WASHINGTON - The bipartisan legislation introduced in the United States Senate on May 19 would ensure that hemp-derived CBD (cannabidiol) products are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), as are other legal products used in dietary supplements, foods and beverages. It is true that section 12619 of the Agricultural Act removes hemp-derived products from their Schedule I status under the Controlled Substances Act, but this legislation does not legalize CBD in general. A big myth that exists about this Farm Bill is that cannabidiol (CBD), a non-intoxicating compound found in cannabis, is legalized.

An act of Congress was needed to legalize cultivation of hemp, and sponsors of this Access to Hemp and Consumer Safety Act suggested that another piece of congressional legislation might be needed to clear way for legal use of CBD in food, dietary supplements and beverages. Even CBD products produced by state legal medical or adult cannabis programs are illegal products under federal law both within states and across state borders. While section 12619 of Agriculture Act removed hemp and hemp-derived products from Schedule I of Controlled Substances Act, this legislation does not legalize CBD in general. CBD products produced within state legal medical or adult marijuana programs remain illegal under federal law and are therefore subject to 280E and federal banking regulations.

Allyson Ribb
Allyson Ribb

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