FDA CBD Update

FDA CBD Update March 2020: Here are the Details

On March 5th, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an update to Congress on the status of rule-making for CBD. It came a little late (it was due at the end of February), but hey, better late than never.

This seems like good news, right? After all, we can’t have progress without movement, especially when it comes to regulations from the FDA.

But (and you had to assume there was a but coming), this new update has given us very little new information.

Let’s get into it.

March 2020 FDA CBD Update

Initially, the report was going to focus on and issue guidelines on how the FDA will regulate CBD.

And that’s what people have been waiting for. We’re waiting for the FDA to finally say “this is how we’re going to handle CBD.”

Unfortunately, that’s not quite what we got.

The update reads: “Today, we are providing updates on our efforts in this area, including several new steps in areas of education, research and enforcement with the ultimate goal of continuing to protect the public health and working to provide market clarity.”

Why a lack of progress on regulations?

The FDA CBD Update reiterates the fact that there’s a lack of data to support regulations just yet.

FDA CBD Update

In fact, a lot of the update centres around research and the push for more. That, at least, is a very good thing – something we can definitely support!

This research will help the FDA continue to educate consumers, they note, on the questions that many have about it: “We remain focused on educating the public about the number of questions that remain regarding CBD’s safety. There may be risks that need to be considered before using CBD products outside of the monitored setting of a prescription from your health care provider.”

To that end, the FDA has also re-opened the public docket established for their May 2019 public hearing. It will remain open indefinitely in the hopes that more scientific data will be submitted. It will also allow the public to comment and to share relevant data with the agency.

Stepping Up Enforcement

The other element of the report focuses on enforcement action. If you’ve been following the news, you may be aware that the FDA seems to be stepping up their enforcement game. In November, 15 different companies received warning letters from the FDA. These letters were for making medical claims and/or marketing CBD products as dietary supplements and adding CBD to human and animal foods.

FDA CBD Update

This, it seems, is likely to continue: “Any enforcement policy would need to balance the goals of protecting the public and providing more clarity to industry and the public regarding FDA’s enforcement priorities based on the known risks to public health. As we move forward, FDA intends to continue taking action to address violations we identify that put the public at risk.”

Other segments focused on other elements, including:

  • CBD as a dietary supplement
  • Vaping
  • Safety

Final Thoughts

We figure you can take the March 2020 FDA CBD Update 1 of 2 ways:

  • Be frustrated by a lack of movement
  • Be happy that at least something is being done

Whatever happens in the future, we’ll keep you updated. Stay tuned.