3C CEO Nic Easley discussed the various aspects involved with CBD at the State of Cannabis event on the Queen Mary in Long Beach, California. The topic dealt with developing a balance of business, science, endocannabinoid research, and actually helping patients when it comes to CBD. The Controlled Substance Act of the United States was discussed per how it defines all cannabinoids as illegal, despite ongoing research vouching for its efficacy for treating a number of debilitating medical conditions ranging from epilepsy to chronic pain.
Mr. Easley also discussed the 2014 Farm Bill, which allowed hemp cultivation for the extraction of seeds, fibers and hulls (which does not include female unpollinated flowers) in collaboration with the State Department of Agriculture and an institution of higher education. Under the Cole Memo (now revoked), one could not be involved in CBD extraction as a business unless one had a state-licensed medical cannabis operation for cultivation and extraction. This poses an issue in some states such as Colorado, where you cannot sell non-THC products in a dispensary. The OLLS Decision Letter in Colorado states that unless a CBD product was derived from a licensed State Farm Bill Program (or from the State Medical Cannabis Program), it is illegal.
Even with a Department of Agriculture license for hemp cultivation and a Department of Health license for extraction, operators cannot sell those products in Colorado because the only products that can be sold in a licensed dispensary are marijuana products produced under medical or recreational regulations. Consequently, these operators have to be licensed recreational/medical producers and extractors growing a low THC variety through their cannabis operation tracking (METRC) to then extract the plant material for CBD. Because of these issues, Mr. Easley observed that the majority of current CBD businesses are operating illegally. That being said, the 2018 Farm Bill will likely carve out great new options for hemp derived CBD operators.
Mr. Easley reviewed the importance of maintaining best practice international standards, which are namely the Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), Good Distribution Practices (GDP), and Good Agricultural Collection Practices (GACP) guidelines. Many international regulatory bodies are utilizing these best practice standards as cornerstones for their cannabis regulations, therefore familiarity with these standards is crucial to ensuring international license awardal and import/export contracts. Only a very select few CBD, hemp, and cannabis companies are falling within best standards; therefore, looking into how we can create new companies that prioritize helping people and compliance is a key to longevity in the industry.
Interested in starting or growing a CBD or hemp business? Contact Us today and we can discuss how to best go about it, legally.
What’s the CBDeal? Building a legal and compliant CBD or hemp business.