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State and municipal CBD bans haven't helped anything


There have been a spate of bans on CBD products in American jurisdictions in the time since the substance was legalized federally, most recently last month in Washington state.


Cannabis enthusiasts and those interested in the industry have found these reflexive moves by local and state governments onerous and even oppressive, but the further these prohibitions develop the clearer their folly becomes.


Many people heard about the police arrests and product seizures that happened at the beginning of 2019 after the 2018 Farm Bill legalized industrial hemp (and its derivative CBD), but many of the laws specifically prohibiting the substance came more recently.


Over the summer, New York City instituted a ban on CBD products in food and drink products. Mayor Bill DeBlasio said he was acting on the guidelines of the Food and Drug Administration, but it is still possible to purchase such products in many places nationwide.


California also banned CBD foods and drinks this year. [1]


On August 1, Washington state banned CBD in food as well, leaving Oregon as the only remaining state on the Pacific coast to protect such goods under state law. [2]


Food and drink CBD offerings aren’t FDA approved, but these state and local bans are actually redundant and at worst, counterproductive. [1]


The reason CBD foodstuffs are not allowed on the market is because FDA bureaucrats haven’t formulated clear enough rules surrounding the cannabis compound, which many people use for common ailments like anxiety and inflammation.


Simply not having clear rules from the FDA on the subset of CBD products means they are technically not allowed for now, but once those guidelines are approved, these state and municipal laws will be the new sticking point for business owners and consumers.


“Enforcement officials in Washington are signaling that the prohibition efforts will be implemented in a gentle, informative and educative manner rather than a hard crack down on all products at once,” reported Cannabis Radar. [3]


According to Cannabis Radar, specially licensed stores that sell THC-heavy cannabis and marijuana products can still sell CBD edibles, but they simply won’t be able to be sold on ordinary store shelves. [3]


“It's clear CBD regulations are a mess right now. They're confusing, changing, and often seemingly at odds with each other and themselves,” Reason magazine reports. “While Washington State, California, and other states deserve some of the blame for that, most of the fault lies with the [FDA].” [1]


Former commissioner of the FDA, Scott Gottlieb, has previously said publicly that clear regulations from the FDA, which he calls the “Foot-Dragging Agency,” could take years to arise. [1]


In the meantime, the administrations confusing directions have bled down to states and cities, leaving ordinary people afraid for their investments and deprived of products they love.


Sources

[1] https://reason.com/2019/09/07/pointless-cbd-bans-are-spreading-like-well-cbd/

[2] https://www.wweek.com/news/2019/08/29/after-washington-state-ban-oregon-becomes-the-last-west-coast-state-where-consumers-can-buy-cbd-infused-food-and-beverages/

[3] https://thecannabisradar.com/washington-state-bans-cbd-edibles/4059/

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