We all know that CBD oil infused products are all the rage, especially within the healthcare domain. CBD lotion for pain as well as pure hemp oil for pain are well-known and desired natural treatment options for conditions spanning from fibromyalgia to standard muscle cramps following a workout.
Now, the gastronomy industry is trying to get involved in the CBD and natural hemp craze. However, most states do not allow for CBD-infused food and drinks since the FDA provides no over-arching regulation. But the FDA isn’t completely against CBD either, so there is currently a substantially gray area covering CBD gastronomy.
As consumers continue their hunt for CBD products, local restaurants and bars continue to toe the line of legality until the FDA makes a final decision regarding their CBD policies.
What CBD products are on the market today?
Generally, when you buy CBD oil, it is for pain-management or stress relief purposes.
That is the most common form in the medical industry. But in gastronomy, there is a huge range of CBD products open for consumer consumption including:
- Coffee, teas, and smoothies
- Pastries, cakes and other bakery items
- Pet foods
What does CBD oil taste like in foods and drinks?
Unrefined hemp oil has a strong grassy taste that can overpower the taste of your favorite drink or meal.
That’s why many people tend to prefer CBD oils. Food manufacturers and chefs have found a way to extract only the CBD and dissolve it down to a coconut oil-like flavor, while still keeping the potential health benefits.
What is the FDA’s stance on CBD?
Since its passing in 1938, The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act has made it illegal to sell an active ingredient in dietary supplements or foods for sale. CBD is considered an active ingredient, so under this law, all infused products should be illegal. Nonetheless, they have not taken any action against companies that are infusing their products with CBD.
Scott Gottlieb, the former FDA commissioner previously expressed major interest in CBD products and said that the agency may eventually allow the sale of CBD-infused drinks and platters, with diluted forms of the compound. However, as public hearings about CBD started in April, he began to share doubts and worries about possible negative side-effects of directly consuming CBD products.
According to Gottlieb and other representatives, the FDA’s number one concern is to regulate the booming CBD market - whether that be to legalize or ban infusions.
The problem of synthetic and naturally derived CBD
A few years ago in Utah, there were some cases of synthetic CBD products leading to death. Since CBD products for consumption are not regulated as it is, it can be difficult for consumers to find out which products have natural CBD and which are synthetic.
This concern will continue to become more important as CBD continues to rise in popularity, especially in edible form. If the FDA chooses to legalize CBD additives, they, along with other federal agencies will have to create a process testing between synthetic versus natural derivatives.
As legislation continues to develop, this problem will slowly get under control. Until then, you need to remain vigilant and informed as a consumer when it comes to edible CBD products since you are at risk for direct health complications.
Looking at the current developments on the federal government level, we can expect, that sooner or later, CBD additives will be legal for the food and drink industry. After all, CBD product sales are predicted to reach $22 billion by 2022.
But most consumers prefer to reap the benefits of hemp and CBD in the form of topical creams, oils, and ointments. At least until the edible CBD has become completely regulated and deemed safe for consumption by the FDA.
Products like CBD lotion for pain, are generally more regulated than their food additive counterparts. Also, topical products are never ingested, so there is a smaller risk for negative or dangerous side effects.