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Last week, the Federal Food & Drug Administration (FDA) released its long-awaited report to Congress on the potential regulatory pathways for the sale of hemp-derived CBD products. Despite the anticipation, not much was actually done, as the agency continues to kick the can down the road, claiming that more studies are needed before it can take action. Similar to other markets, such as tobacco, and electronic cigarettes, the agency's delay results in the worst of both worlds - U.S. hemp farmers are denied profitable markets for their crops, while unregulated products continue to proliferate, often without regard for public health or safety.
The report, does, however, provide valuable insight into the Agency's thinking and next steps, including:
While the FDA's existing work towards regulation is admired, this is still considered "too little, too late." Therefore, we join several proponents of responsible regulation of the CBD industry to call on Congress to force the FDA's hand, declare CBD and other hemp constituents as lawful ingredients, and require the agency to implement a regulatory plan to protect consumers and unleash U.S. hemp farming.
Congress is already developing plans to spur FDA action. In the meantime, hemp supporters are encouraged to contact their U.S. Congress representative and urge them to co-sponsor H.R.5587, which allows FDA-regulated, hemp-derived CBD to be marketed in dietary supplements and as food and beverage additives. We've included the U.S. Hemp Roundtable's portal for contacting your local representative.
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