The CBD industry is a multi-billion industry that is rapidly growing without a lot of oversight or regulations. There are all variety of cannabinoid-infused products in the market, but are these products’ labels accurate? CBD is derived from a plant that is similar to marijuana, only that the hemp plant has a low concentration of THC. Regulations around CBD products require that the products should not contain more than 3% THC. However, the majority of the products violate this regulation though baring labels that claim to abide by the rule.
According to Stephen Muller, the CEO at Mile High Labs, the industry needs to be governed with strict regulations to ensure that cannabinoid products meet the required standards. “Consumers out there innocently expect that all the products on the shelves are what they claim to be by trusting the product labels,” said Muller.
Mile High Labs is known for its products and ingredients testing. Recently, CBS News presented nine sample products sourced from the Atlantic coast before Mile High Labs for testing. None of the samples was found to contain heavy metals or pesticides above the federal regulatory standards. However, only four out of the nine tested samples had accurate labels on the amount of cannabinoid present in the product.
Two of the samples only contained 60-80% of the indicated amounts of cannabidiol. Three samples had excess amounts of cannabidiol compared to what was stated on their product labels. Surprisingly, one of them tested 1050 milligrams of cannabidiol though it claimed to contain only 500 milligrams.
According to Muller, cannabinoids are the most expensive ingredient in the products. The company that put double the amount stated in the label may not have done that on purpose as it would be a terrible and costly business decision.
“There are strict testing requirements for cannabis products, but none exists for hemp products currently,” noted Kara LaVaux, the cannabis and food safety supervisor at the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment.
The Colorado Department of Agriculture requires registration of hemp growers and runs inspections to ascertain the potency of THC and ensuring the hemp plant doesn’t exceed 3% THC. But even after that, businesses and companies refine and supply CBD into the market without any form of government oversight. Ingestible cannabis and hemp products should be tested for contaminants and potency.
“The governments should intervene and regulate how we make the hemp-extracted CBD products,” said Adam Fossier, the manager at Discover CBD, a producer and retailer firm in Denver. Law-abiding sellers who want to remain on the safer side of the laws are concerned about sub-grade CBD products, which could lead to government pullback on the legalization of its sale.
Businesses and consumers in the cannabis industry are eager to see what the FDA will do to regulate and oversee the sale of hemp products. Lack of Consumer trust for the products might hold the whole industry back. FDA might regulate hemp products as a food, a supplement, a drug, or as all the three.