After several debates on the potential benefits of hemp CBD products, the US congress has decided to take the bull by the horns and legalize the use of hemp CBD as dietary supplements. This was caused by the level of delays from the FDA, which is yet to provide a valid reason why CBD should not be considered. This bill (H.R.841) is called Hemp and Hemp-derived CBD consumer protection and market stabilization Act 2021, and it is identical to H.R. 8179, which was introduced at the last Congress.
Introduced by Congressmen Oregon Democrat Kurt Schrader and Morgan Griffith from the Virginia Republic, the bill aims to subject hemp to other levels of regulations affecting dietary supplements. This also means that all hemp CBD products must be in accordance with the Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), new dietary ingredients (NDI) fillings, and labeling and marketing provisions. Twelve other democratic co-sponsors also supported the bill. Based on the bill's terms, the definition of hemp will remain as a cannabis plant with not more than 0.3%. This factor is essential for differentiating hemp and marijuana.
While the new bill may radically reduce the number of brands on the market, it is pertinent to note that this will be a plus for companies that can produce quality hemp or spend high to carryout toxicology testing.
While speaking on the new bill, John Hendrix, chief growth officer at Driftless Extracts and Workman's Relief, believes the new bill will "provide the category and all of us that play in that field a legitimate entry point into the mainstream marketplaces that have kept us at bay for years now." He later further stated that "this is a step in the right direction for sure. It's certainly not the final piece of the puzzle but a very important first step for those that are making quality products."
The expression of frustration for the act of FDA hopes that the bill would aid in shifting the agency to think around Hemp CBD and hemp. Many consumers have been exposed to certain risks due to the continuous inaction of the FDA. These risks center on taking illegal or unsafe products which are poorly manufactured, incorrect label or illegal delivery of THC and other contaminants. Lately, CBD companies that are responsible and follow the federal regulations and market safe products and beneficial CBD dietary supplements are urged to relate their shelf with other disreputable companies that compromise the public's safety.
Will the bill compel the FDA to act?
The bill's fate continues as some congressmen prefer that the FDA take the lead while others have become impatient with the FDA's position.
A press release lamented the "regulatory uncertainty" that remains on including Hemp-derived CBD and hemp in edible products. This coalition has been asserted by CBD investment and commerce to have been chilled, impacting the growth of job creation and economic opportunities for farmers and businesses.
Michael McGuffin, the president of the American Herbal Products Association and a coalition partner, made clarity around the industry's desire for Congress to come in now. He maintains that the hemp and hemp CBD should be treated and considered as botanical supplements in the market.
Let us know what you think about the bill and its impact on the cannabis market. We will love to hear from you soon.