The Recent FDA Science-Based Policy on CBD
Predictions estimate cannabidiol (CBD) sales in the U.S. could reach $16 billion by the year 2025. Due to increasing skepticism of the rapidly growing marijuana industry, cannabis companies selling CBD-infused products such as candies, soft drinks, bath salts, lotions, and more, face potential strict regulations enforced by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). With the growing number of cannabis-friendly states across the nation, as well as the expansive uses and treatments CBD offers for severe pain, nausea, and other ailments, Congress and canna-businesses strive for marketing privileges for cannabis-derived products in the United States.
What is the FDA Regulation on CBD?
Decisions by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration are formed based on science, health, and the safety impact on American society. Current statutory authorities and legal requirements of the FDA perceive cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds like other regulated substances, regardless of updated state laws. However, the legal requirements vary depending on the product type in question. For instance, drugs are marked and regulated differently than food, including dietary supplements. When it comes to complex questions posed by CBD, the FDA’s mission focuses on their top priority of promoting and protecting public health. In its current state, the FDA is committed to maintaining science-based decision making regarding CBD. That said, the agency is exploring various pathways and opportunities to market CBD-derived products lawfully.
What Do These FDA Restrictions Mean for Companies?
The safety and regulation of CBD products involves evaluating and addressing questions that will properly inform the FDA’s consideration of potential regulatory frameworks that maintain public health standards. Given the overall uncertainty of CBD safety, the FDA remains committed to facilitating and preserving incentives for clinical research for new drugs and drug uses. Due to the many unanswered questions raised by CBD products, the Agency must collect a myriad of data and information to fill the gaps in order to determine the safety of food, dietary supplements, and drugs. This means reviewing everything from manufacturing, product quality assurance, marketing, labeling, and sale of cannabis-derived products and compounds. This puts restrictions on companies looking to sell and market cannabidiol products with unsubstantiated claims associated with CBD products, otherwise deterring consumers to put off important medical care initiatives, such as receiving proper diagnoses, treatments, and supportive care.
The same is true of companies looking to recommend pet owners cannabidiol products for pets rather than seeking veterinarian consultation and appropriate treatment options. Any company violating these regulations and illegally selling CBD products claiming to prevent, diagnose, treat, or cure serious diseases, such as cancer, will be sent warning letters to correct sale and marketing language.
When Will the FDA Change Policies Again?
No one knows exactly when the FDA will change policies regarding regulations of cannabis-derived products. The good news is that the FDA is committed to evaluating the regulatory frameworks for non-drug uses, including products marketed as foods and dietary supplements. Until restrictions are lifted or loosened, companies will be held to abiding by the current regulations. Who knew CBD would take off?