The CBD market is booming, with many relying on CBD oil for pain management and CBD creams and rubs for a variety of pain management purposes. However, what’s going on with the FDA? What’s the problem with CBD claims? Where’s the reliable science, and how can a consumer know which CBD products are reliable? These are all extremely important questions that deserve answers.

What’s going on with the FDA?

The FDA recently released a letter of warning to Curaleaf, a dominant player in the market for CBD and cannabis products.

In that letter, the FDA informed Curaleaf that some of its claims, or marketing tactics, violated the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. It’s crucial to note that the FDA isn’t up in arms about the products themselves, but rather with the words and claims that the labels on the products use to market to consumers. Here are some of the phrases the FDA highlighted:

  • “For chronic pain.”
  • “Soothing tincture for chronic pain.”
  • “CBD can successfully reduce anxiety symptoms, both alone and in conjunction with other treatments.”
  • “CBD oil can be used in a variety of ways to help with chronic anxiety.”
  • “CBD has also been shown to be effective in treating Parkinson’s disease.”
  • “CBD can also be used in conjunction with opioid medications, and a number of studies have demonstrated that CBD can, in fact, reduce the severity of opioid-related withdrawal and lessen the buildup of tolerance.”
  • “CBD can be a powerful ally if you’re suffering from chronic inflammation and pain.”


It’s in the definitions

Curaleaf and its sister-brands also received reprimands in that same letter concerning their problematic labeling of CBD dietary supplements. According to the FDA, their products did not meet FDA standards for the definition of dietary supplements.

A lot of these problems come down not to the individual CBD products, but rather the claims. More specifically, the problem lies within a lack of clarity in the claims’ definitions. Because of this lack of clarity, the FDA stepped in, claiming that this letter aims to protect consumers.

Market fall-out

This letter had fairly immediately ramifications. Curaleaf stocks fell by 8%, and CVS booted Curaleaf products off their shelves. Again, this wasn’t a product recall or a Chipotle-level “oops” that necessarily negatively affected consumers.

Clearly, to protect and continue to foster the CBD market, label standardization is necessary. Regardless of innocent intent behind specific marketing tactics, it’s crucial to eliminate confusion to protect consumers. Standardizing labels means that consumers don’t have to go out and do massive amounts of research themselves. This, in turn, makes labels and products more reliable, and thus more easily purchased and consumed.

Labels, science, and consumers

Perhaps this letter issued by the FDA is really a blessing to the CBD market. It marks a new level of government attention–attention that includes hearings to recognize the huge medical potential of CBD. This is a massive step and marks a level of openness to CBD products on a nation-wide, governmental scale. All of this promises to move the market in a more positive, more reliable, more scientifically backed direction for consumers.

While this information is exciting, it doesn’t address a fundamental question.

When a consumer is searching for CBD cream or CBD oil for pain management today or browsing the internet to CBD oil online, how do they know a company is reliable?

CBD, marketing, and reliability

When looking for a reliable CBD supplier, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Does the company show an interest in keeping astride FDA developments?
  • Do they show consumers they are keeping up to date with the latest legislation and medical standards?
  • Does the company make wild medical claims without any scientific backing?
  • If the company backs their medical claims, do they site particular studies from reputable medical journals?

These are just a few things to keep in mind. Many studies describe the potential benefits of CBD. While more science, knowledge, and experimentation are necessary, it’s important for companies to show consumers they are making modest and up-to-date medical claims to give individuals options and control along their health journey.

If you want pain relief from a product that won’t slow you down or make you dependent, fill out our Relevium contact form or call today on (360)-200-7417.