The FDA's Report To Congress On CBD: What You Need To Know

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has outlined its approach to studying the current CBD marketplace.

The federal agency penned a report titled, “Sampling Study of the Current Cannabidiol Marketplace to Determine the Extent That Products are Mislabeled or Adulterated.” The document was sent to the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations and the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations on Thursday.

The report is the FDA’s answer to a “Joint Explanatory Statement” included in the “Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020” which stipulated mandatory testing requirements.

“The FDA is further directed to perform a sampling study of the current CBD marketplace to determine the extent to which products are mislabeled or adulterated and report to the Committees within 180 days of enactment of this Act,” the paper published on Dec. 20, 2019 read.

The new report includes a plan for a long-term sampling study, summary of sample testing from past years, description of methodology, and preliminary results from a smaller 2020 near-term sampling study. 

Why It Matters

Concerns over CBD safety are stopping the FDA from approving the free commerce of CBD products in the U.S., experts argue.

In other words, we will not have a regulatory framework for CBD until they have enough data to rule on its safety.

Thus, the FDA’s research and ensuing findings are essential to the survival of this industry. 

“We want to thank the FDA for recognizing the importance of thoughtful regulation in the cannabis industry and applaud its efforts to recommend future studies that will improve insight into our fast-growing marketplace," David Culver, U.S. vice president of government and stakeholder relations at cannabis behemoth Canopy Growth Corp. CGC, said.

Canopy distributes CBD products and brands in the U.S., with plans to scale this year — including a Martha Stewart CBD line launch.

“We look forward to FDA’s continued work to better understand the benefits of our industry, and to ensure bad actors are removed and clarity is provided across the marketplace," Culver added. "One thing is certain—the U.S. needs thoughtful regulations now, and we stand ready to work alongside FDA to contribute our knowledge to help ensure safe and effective standards across America.”

The Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), was however, a little bit more concerned with the results of the report, which showed considerable issues with CBD products.

Source: FDA.

“While CHPA welcomes additional input from FDA regarding CBD, we’re concerned that the report conclusion further delays any action to better regulate CBD-containing products,” the organization founded in 1881 said in an email.

In fact, they highlighted how the FDA’s report revealed that “less than half of the products they tested contained the amount of CBD on the label.”

The organization also noted that the findings are in line with independent and academic data.

“Collectively, these third-party reports consistently confirm that the CBD/hemp product category would benefit from active regulatory oversight by the FDA and legislative action from Congress,” they concluded.

Photo: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration

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