The Legal Status of CBD in North America
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North America is the world’s largest market for CBD products, but marketing regulations remain ambiguous. In the United States, enriching foods and beverages with CBD or selling the substance as a dietary supplement remains illegal, according to the FDA. Still, the establishment of a less restrictive regulatory framework is already started.
Besides the new changes about cannabis and CBD around the country, the rules adapt to the many benefits people can get from CBD. It is now legal and easy to buy your CBD products from many places including the shop Justbob where you can find top CBD products online at the best price.
CBD and cannabis in the United States
In the US, cannabis is permitted for therapeutic use in 33 states, in ten if the purpose is recreational. But it is precisely in this country where the main contradictions relating to the legal status of CBD are observed, essentially because the substance is legal in some states but not at the federal level, where the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) still classifies cannabis on “List I” of controlled substances, the most restrictive of all.
However, at the end of 2020, the situation seems to have tried to get out of the impasse. In a move that marked a turning point in US agricultural policy, lawmakers reached an agreement on the regularization of industrial hemp, which materialized in the so-called Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 or Farm Bill, passed by the Trump administration to promote hemp, among other crops.
This law contemplates the production and research with hemp containing no more than 0.3% THC, which should have resulted in a modification of the Controlled Substances Act for the first time since 1970. Instead, it will be canceling federal control over cannabis and derivatives containing less than 0.3% THC and creating conditions for regularizing hemp-derived cannabidiol extracts.
The 2018 agricultural law, however, explicitly preserved the authority of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to regulate cannabis products under the Federal FD&C Dyes and Cosmetics Act, which, passed by Congress in 1938, authorizes the FDA to oversee the safety of food, drugs, and cosmetics. Translated, this means that CBD is subject to the exact requirements as for FDA-regulated products, regardless of whether cannabis and its derivatives are classified as hemp in the 2018 Agricultural Law.
For the moment, therefore, enriching food and drinks with CBD or selling the substance as a food supplement remains illegal according to the FDA regardless of the origin of the product (hemp or marijuana).
More about CBD regulations in the US
Following the insistence of Congress to resolve the situation, on March 31, 2021 the FDA held a public hearing on the use of CBD in consumer products (including food and drink) in the hope of putting an end to inconsistencies such as the fact that while in some states CBD products can be bought at the supermarket. In others, the sale is punishable by imprisonment.
Enriching foods and drinks with CBD or selling the substance as a dietary supplement remains illegal according to the FDA.
Over the ten-hour hearing, more than 400 stakeholders, including cannabis growers, start-ups, academic researchers, and consumer advocates, discussed how the FDA should regulate the burgeoning cannabis industry. While some have called for rigorous scrutiny, others have lobbied for a more flexible regulatory approach, especially multi-million dollar firms. But everyone agreed that the FDA needs to remedy the lack of regulation sooner rather than later, even if how to do it is far from clear.
However, one thing has been clarified! As reiterated by the acting chief of the FDA, there are still many pending questions regarding cannabidiol. For example, the amount of extract that can be considered safe for daily consumption, the interaction with other substances, use during pregnancy, the effect on children, or the consequences of consumption if this continues over the years.
Thus, the FDA seems anything but willing to lift the restriction on food and drink immediately, even though CBD and THC are active ingredients in agency-approved drugs, including Epidiolex, Marinol, or Dronabinol. However, unlike food products and dietary supplements, these have undergone rigorous clinical analyzes.
For the FDA, there are therefore many unresolved questions regarding the safety of generalized use of CBD-based products, including the cannabinoid concentration that can be considered safe and the possible consequences of long-term exposure to the substance.
In this context, the legalization of CBD-containing food products could last for years. It could also give rise to a legal limbo, which would create tension in the industry and confusion among manufacturers, hemp growers, and consumers, defenseless in the absence of a legal framework. Yet, according to the most conservative estimates, CBD sales in the United States could reach $16 billion by 2025.
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