Cannabidiol (CBD), the cannabis extract that has been referred to as a ‘miracle drug’ by some has been all the rage over the past few years. Said to be effective against a variety of medical conditions, the compound has been subject to great interest.
The 2018 Hemp Farming Act catalyzed the sector’s growth, allowing farmers to grow industrial hemp under state programs and inevitably, leading to an influx of suppliers, each looking to cash in on the insanely popular cash crop.
The industry’s growth has been so fast that it has outpaced regulators, leaving them scrambling to create some sort of order in a sector flooded with thousands of untested products. Results from a recent survey show that a large majority of CBD consumers wish the industry had a more comprehensive regulatory structure.
The poll by the advocacy group National Consumers League found out that 86% of Floridians think CBD products “should be safe, backed by proven science and work as advertised.”
Patricia Kelmar, with the National Consumers League, says that the poll is evidence that people are looking beyond conventional medicines, but more research has to be done first. “CBD has the potential to provide therapy and give us some relief, but we have to make sure that the science is behind it.”
In the wake of the 2018 Farm Bill, tons of firms joined the cannabidiol fray, each selling products promising untold medical benefits. This is despite warnings from the FDA that marketing and selling CBD products as dietary supplements is illegal. In the past weeks, the organization has issued further warnings to companies making unsubstantiated claims about the benefits of their products, including a Florida company.
The FDA and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sent Florida-based company Rooted Apothecary a warning letter for claiming that its CBD products could treat the symptoms of conditions such as ADHD, Parkinson’s disease, and autism among others on its website and social media accounts.
Ned Sharpless, Acting Commissioner of the FDA at the time, said that the organization is working to protect Americans from companies marketing products with unsubstantiated claims that they prevent, diagnose, treat or cure a number of diseases or conditions.
“We’ve sent numerous warning letters that focus on matters of significant public health concern to CBD companies, and these actions should send a message to the broader market about complying with FDA requirements. As we examine potential regulatory pathways for the lawful marketing of cannabis products, protecting and promoting public health-based decision making remains our top priority.”
Amy Abernethy, FDA Principal Deputy Commissioner, says that they recognize that there has been significant public interest in cannabis and cannabis-derived products. She adds that “we are committed to advancing our regulation of these products through an approach that, in line with our mission, prioritizes public health, fosters innovation and promotes consumer confidence.”
Experts recommend that CBD industry actors, including companies like Youngevity International Inc. (NASDAQ: YGYI) and Plus Products Inc. (CSE: PLUS) (OTCQB: PLPRF), take the lead in furthering research so that the concerns of the public can be addressed.
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