The state officials of New York state were one of the pioneers to announce the infusion of CBD in chocolates and tea for alleviating anxiety and similar ailments without creating the high of marijuana. However, the health inspectors of New York City have recently seized CBD-infused products worth thousands of dollars from the Fat Cat Kitchen and similar restaurants. Its owners have also been warned from selling the same or face possible penalties. These incidents were reported within just weeks of CBD becoming legal all across the country.
Various inconsistencies have emerged in state, local and federal rules pertaining to CBD in the New York City which has made its growing business community succumb to heavy losses.C.J. Holm, the owner of the Fat Cat Kitchen pointed out that, “I’m trying to be compliant with the law, but no one seems to be fully aware of what the law is and isn’t.”
Piecemeal legalization of marijuana has lead to the growth of consumer interest in CBD-infused edibles, topical creams and tinctures. This also received the legal certification of being sold as a recreational or medical drug in 33 of its states in spite of being banned by federal laws.
Interest Of Food Giants
A report published by the Cowen Washington Research Group in 2018 revealed that an estimated $300 million was spent by U.S. consumers on CBD food and drinks in the same year. This led to growing interest of other food and drink manufacturers like the Coca-Cola Company and many more for reaping its unearthed potential.
2018 Farm Bill
This was enacted for clearing up the legal status of CBD by legalizing usage of cannabis extracts derived from the hemp plant. These are known to contain extremely low levels of THC which is the main psychoactive trigger in marijuana.
The law gave rise to further confusion in terms of business houses wishing to sell CBD infused food or drink. It became almost impossible to abide by one set of regulations without breaching the another.
A guidance was issued by the officials belonging to the State Department of Agriculture in December terming “chocolates with CBD drizzle,”“CBD tea,” and other CBD edibles as legal provided they were manufactured and marketed as dietary supplements. It is imperative to note here that these supplements have to adhere to more stringent guidelines when compared to ordinary food.
The department also made it very clear that doing the same will be in direct contradiction to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration rules as it has specifically termed addition of CBD to food as a totally unlawful act. The agency had shown green signal to a CBD-infused drug for the very first time last year which paved the path for more confusion to follow.The health inspectors of New York City are seriously considering this legislation.
The owner of Fat Cat Kitchen was thus taken by surprise when all her CBD infused snacks, honey and even raw cookie dough was confiscated in February. Similar scenes could also be seen in four other eateries spread across the city. Holm and her peer restaurant owners received a letter from the department which notified that the seizures shall be initiated by inspectors post 1st July.
Till now it is unclear about the sale of CBD edibles by the cafes and restaurants as dietary supplements in spite of receiving the legal backing of New York state officials.
Standpoint Of FDA & Health Department
Health Department spokesman Michael Lanza revealed that they were simply acting as per the ban of FDA on CBD-infused food and drink. However, FDA spokesman declined commenting on the New York regulations.
Maine, Colorado and some other states have tried to pass laws for allowing CBD infusion to food and drinks. Although CBD is presently a listed drug, FDA might allow its enlisting as a dietary supplement or food additive in days to come. A public forum shall be held in Maryland on May 31st for addressing this burning issue.
CBD Vendors Speak
Holm and her fellow CBD vendors are trying to devise their very own strategies which shall be compliant with the legal standpoints. Igor Yakovlev, the manufacturer of CBD-infused BeezyBeez Honey has started printing a disclaimer stating that his product has not yet been “evaluated or approved” by FDA.
Holm consulted her lawyer and came to the conclusion that FDA has imposed a ban on the addition of CBD to food meant for “interstate commerce.”This is why she feels it is perfectly fine to sell CBD coffee provided the extract is both produced and processed in New York.
Cortland based farmer Allan Gandelman, who founded the New York Cannabis Growers and Processors Association earlier this year vented out his frustration by saying that, “It is so confusing because you can ask three different attorneys and get three different answers.” He further added that, “so you decide you’re going to blaze a path forward, and produce a product that customers really want, and go for it until the government gets its act together.”
The Arizona Police Department is Now Clear to Use CBD
When it comes to the laws regarding CBD, Arizona has been the most flexible amongst the US. It endorsed the farming of hemp and was among the first to have their production legalized through the Texas Farm bill. In fact, even the farmers are considering replacing their cotton with hemp. And now, Arizona comes back yet again with new laws regarding the use of CBD for police recruits.
The Usual Suspects
During the exams for the entrance to the Police Department, potential recruits have to go through drug tests in order to qualify for the position. “The usual suspects” among the drugs that are tested for are:
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) commonly found in Marijuana
- Cocaine (COC)
When we take a look at the first item on the list, it’s obvious at a glance that Marijuana is out of the question and any candidate who is tested for it and failed would be disqualified. However, it’s important to note that CBD is also a component found in Marijuana and can also lead to a failed drug test. However, with Arizona’s new laws, the cops will still be qualified even when tested positive for CBD.
Impacts of the Decision
Persecutors of CBD would definitely argue against this new law and consider all the negatives of such a decision, such as the harmful consequences of a beat cop “high” on “weed”. However, for the recruits who are taking CBD oil as a medical treatment for their different conditions are sure to be glad for this to have happened.
It is definitely going to give the general public, the supporters of CBD and the users of CBD amongst the cops to know that they would no longer be judged and disqualified for taking medication for their condition.
The Arizonian Front
After this latest law, it is clear that if the legalization of CBD is a war, Arizona is definitely on the frontlines. And this isn’t the first time Arizona has been an active frontline for this battle. Over the past few months, Arizona state laws have legalized the cultivation of hemp, legalized the research on hemp and above all, legalized the selling and production of CBD-infused products.
Being one safe haven for CBD in all of US, Arizona is attracting its farmers to cultivate more hemp, going as far as to even making them consider replacing their cotton with hemp crops. And now, with the police being allowed to use CBD openly, even the law enforcement agencies of Arizona is now officially on the CBD Bandwagon.
What all these means is that CBD is here to stay and in Arizona, it’s here to flourish and grow. Even if the US could not take a huge bite off the projected Hemp market of 24 Billion Dollars by 2024, Arizona State laws’ stance on the matter secures at least a spot in that revolution. One small step for Arizona, one giant leap for Cannabidiol.
THC Limit Has Been Set, But are Yet to be Monitored
There’s no doubt about Cannabis’ psychoactive properties, but what is it that truly brings out that “high” among its users? Well, the answer is simple: Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC for short. This substance is a form of cannabidiol oil from among the hundreds of different forms of cannabinoids. Naturally, the amount of THC that can be contained within any food or beauty products has been limited by the FDA.
The Studies on Cannabinoids
According to a paper published by Molecules, amongst many different kinds of cannabinoids, Cannabidiol Oil or CBD, by itself, poses no health risks or psychoactive properties. However, many other of the components in Hemp and Cannabis does work as a stimulant and a psychoactive drug, which makes it difficult to incorporate CBD into food products without adding in some of the negative effects within it.
Further research shows that CBD might actually have benefits that NIDA actually wants to endorse in order to find better medicinal alternatives. For that specific reason, it’s difficult to actively discount the use of CBD in food and beauty products despite the possible harmful effects of it for the human body.
The FDA and THC Limitations
Since the worst of the Cannabinoids is the THC, The Food and Drug Administration of America has limited the use of THC in any kind of food or beauty products to be less than 0.3%. This is to ensure that no harmful doses of THC can be found from the ingestion or the use of these products while incorporating CBD into them.
Unfortunately, these “doses” are not properly monitored and tested by any government agencies to ensure the THC limit and that it doesn’t cause any “high”s in its users, let alone prevent them from failing a drug test.
Effects of Negligence
We’re not claiming that all of these products are inherently evil, as there have been some extraordinary successes in creating topical products beauty products with medicinal properties. Furthermore, with the advent of newer technology, we can expect to see a lot more of such beneficial products in the market.
Despite all that, the lack of proper monitoring is leading to many of the users of these said beauty and health products with more harm than good. Negligence in testing these products properly is leading harmful products to reach the shelves of even the largest of Pharmacies like CVS. To make matters worse, the use of these products are increasing their popularities, influencing other nations following our pop culture, making them invest more and more into these beauty products.
So, it is our earnest request to the proper authorities and channels to take good care of your own laws and do text all the products out in the market properly before deciding to allow them to be openly available at every gas stations and pharmacies without proper administration. Doing so will not only help the unfortunate users of these products who are unknowingly harming themselves but also reduce the amount of negativity and skepticism that CBD sees in the process.
FDA Strikes Again: “Not all CBD Products are Beneficial”
While the American public has been pushing for the legalization of using CBD products, the U.S FDA still believe that although CBD is non-intoxicating, it might not be as safe, healthy and effective for wellness as they have been told. Very recently, the FDA published an update on its website to address some of the claims made by people surrounding CBD, in an attempt to disapprove that CBD is risk-free and can cure certain illnesses miraculously.
The FDA is currently gathering enough evidence from health experts, patients, and cannabis industrialists to gain insight into how CBD might be helping them. The update mentioned that there are still many questions about the safety and quality of CBD products. So, before the public push for relaxed use of CBD, the FDA want to clarify some points regarding CBD.
CBD May Cause Liver Damage And Other Serious Side Effects
Although the FDA admitted that there still isn’t enough evidence to outweigh risks against benefits, it did uncover that CBD could cause liver damage in a small study. In the clinical trials of Epidiolex, a CBD-based drug approved for epilepsy treatment, some patients showed liver toxicity. The symptoms displayed potential liver injury. Epidiolex does not entirely contain CBD but has much higher concentrations of it compared to the hemp products flooding in the market. The CBD in the medicine is 98% purified and oil-based extracted directly from the cannabis plant. Thus, it is highly unlikely that other components of the medicine could cause liver damage.
A study at the University of Arkansas also found that high doses of CBD caused liver damage in mice in 24 hours. Many animals died or almost died within four days. Critics mention that the dose was extremely high, however, according to the study, it was equivalent to the maximum recommended dosage for human maintenance mentioned in Epidiolex. Thus, the mice were given amounts comparable to the amount of Epidiolex ingested by epileptic patients. Doctors are advised to monitor liver enzymes in these patients. Doctors in Colorado, where weed is legal for any reason, monitor liver enzymes for patients ingesting CBD or marijuana.
The most common side effects of Epidiolex is sleep disorder, lethargy, low appetite, weakness, suicidal thoughts, agitation, depression, and panic attacks. Although CBD products in the market may not contain as much as CBD as Epidiolex, the risk of these side effects cannot be underestimated.
CBD Is Not A Cure
The FDA has made it clear to the public that none of the CBD products currently sold in shops, stores, and dispensaries have been approved. So far, only Epidiolex was granted approval, which took several years. FDA also mentioned that Epidiolex is useful as a treatment for children with two rare forms of epilepsy– Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, and not any other condition. Epidiolex is not a sure cure anyways. It was found effective in only 32% of patients. The cannabis industry has used this as leverage on the public and convinced some that CBD can provide remedy from anxiety, depression and even cancer. The FDA refutes such claims and urges people to beware of false hope so that they resort to proper diagnosis and treatment, not baseless claims. The agency warned companies from advertising CBD as a cure for serious diseases like anxiety and depression.
However, the FDA also has its own record of flaws. A 2017 study found the third of all drugs approved by FDA were flagged as threats from 2001 to 2010. FDA states that what might be safe today may not be safe in the future. A poll showed that 44% of Americans believe that the FDA is trustworthy regarding the truth about medicine.
More Research On CBD Needed
Very little is known about CBD and its benefits and risks, which is the main reason behind the FDA’s skepticism towards CBD. Further research is definitely required to weigh out options and to really trust cannabinoid. For someone who is considering using CBD to treat a serious condition, it is better to consult with a physician and specialists in medicine to ensure that their well-being is not at risk. It is best not to buy CBD products blindly now despite their grand claims of curing stress, anxiety and sleep problems.
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