CBD Is Not Banned. FDA Cracks Down On False Advertising Only.
Don’t believe everything you hear, or read online; though the FDA has reached out to a couple of companies in particular, the CBD market is far from over in the United States.
On Thursday (March 24, 2016), the credible and fact-checking website Snopes.com debunked the myth that the FDA effectively banned the substance for sale.
Many cannabis blogs had incorrectly reported than a federal ban is going into effect on CBD products. While it’s true that warning letters were sent in February to eight different CBD manufacturers, up from just six letters issued in 2015; however, most of the main manufacturers of cannabidiol remain in the clear, with no sign of that changing in the near future.
While the FDA is looking for some answers when it comes to these companies’ overreaching claims regarding cannabidiol, it’s far from a crackdown on the cannabinoid compound itself.
The reason that the FDA has gone after specific brands, many of whom were claiming in marketing materials, and even directly on their packaging, that their products put diseases into remission. Other products on the list, upon testing, were found to contain no CBD at all – total false advertising.
The conflict has to do with the way cannabidiol is classified versus the way it is being portrayed and marketed by CBD product manufacturers. According to the FDA’s regulations on language for supplement products, anything classified and labeled as a “dietary supplement” cannot also claim to treat or cure any disease.
Do CBD products pose a risk to public health? Honestly, probably not. However, there’s a big risk in selling patients snake oil that doesn’t actually contain cannabinoids.
Ethics and compassion have made the industry what it is today, and those who want to see cannabis become more accepted will abide by regulations and avoid making egregious medical claims on untested products.
We’re talking about patients with serious health issues that they use cannabidiol to treat. Some of these individuals have no quality of life without potent, affordable CBD products available to them, either via limited storefronts or the internet if they’re in a non-medical marijuana state.
The fact that illegitimate products are being sold to patients, or that promises of miracle cures are being made, is an affront to the credibility of cannabinoid medicine as a whole. Cannabis therapies are not cure-alls and should not be marketed as such for easy financial gain.
Worrying about a crackdown by the authorities just gets in the way of new partnerships and product development. Be responsible and have an attorney on your team, know your medicine sources and who you are dealing with in the cannabis industry, and you will see success in the CBD market.
Of course, everyone in the cannabis industry looks forward to a day when CBD and THC products will be legal and regulated across the spectrum for patients of all types; until then, following the rules and letting your customers vouch for your product is the best bet. Every manufacturer in the cannabis space should have a great attorney on their team, regardless of whether or not your product contains THC.
Clearly, this latest probe and action by the FDA is a good move for consumer safety and cannabis industry accountability. Educate yourself and read up on new policies before making wild assumptions about the state of the industry.