FDA Chief Scott Gottlieb’s Resignation Leaves ‘Billion-Dollar Question’ For CBD Industry

With Gottlieb’s departure the ‘certain’ CBD future is uncertain

Just a week ago, it looked like the Food and Drug Administration was ready to revisit its policies around CBD-infused food and drinks. That may have changed this week, when FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb announced his resignation.

While the federal government in December legalized CBD that’s derived from hemp, a close cousin of marijuana, the FDA’s rules still prohibit companies and restaurants from adding it to food or drinks. Cannabis start-ups, food companies and restaurants have pushed forward anyway, introducing CBD-infused seltzers and lattes in anticipation that the FDA would eventually tweak its rules.

Gottlieb told lawmakers last week he heard them “loud and clear” when Congress legalized hemp-derived CBD late last year. He said he’s putting together a working group of senior officials to write the regulations. He said the FDA would hold its first public hearings in April and outlined some possibilities for what the regulations might look like.

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