Canna~Fangled Abstracts

Regulatory Status of Cannabidiol in the United States: A Perspective.

By September 27, 2018 No Comments
2018 Sep 27;3(1):190-194. doi: 10.1089/can.2018.0030. eCollection 2018.


Cannabidiol (CBD) is 1 of > 100 cannabinoids found in Cannabis sativa L. (Cannabis spp. or Cannabis). Despite its complex and rapidly evolving regulatory status in the United States, projected retail sales of CBD products-hemp, Cannabis and pharmaceutical-are as high as $1.9 billion by 2020. CBD products can currently be purchased online, over the counter, and at Cannabis-specific dispensaries throughout most parts of the country, despite the fact that CBD is presently deemed a Schedule I controlled substance by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and renounced as a dietary supplement ingredient by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These products are largely unregulated, and are being used predominantly to treat specific medical conditions. Recent FDA approval of Epidiolex (CBD) as a treatment for certain pediatric seizure disorders will prompt scheduling of CBD and likely alter FDA enforcement of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C), which to date has mostly been in the form of warning letters. Persuasive legal arguments contend that CBD’s legal status is based on its source. According to these arguments, there are three legal sources. CBD-derived from: (1) parts of the Cannabis plant that do not meet the definition of cannabis in the Controlled Substances Act (CSA); (2) imported “non-psychoactive hemp”; and (3) “Industrial hemp” cultivated as part of a state pilot program per the 2014 Farm Act. Although CBD’s lawful status with respect to the CSA appears to be expanding, its future regulatory status with respect to the FD&C Act is difficult to predict.


CBD; Cannabis; cannabidiol; hemp; marijuana; phytocannabinoids

PMID: 30283822
PMCID: PMC6154432
DOI: 10.1089/can.2018.0030

Conflict of interest statement

Jamie Corroon, ND, MPH is the Medical Director at The Center for Medical Cannabis Education, a for-profit clinical and consulting entity. Rod Kight, Esq. is an attorney and principal of Kight Law Office, LLC dba Kight on Cannabis, a law firm that represents businesses in the cannabis industry.
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