You may remember last December, just a few weeks after passage of AB 45 -- our three-year, landmark effort to fully legalize and regulate the sale of hemp-derived CBD in the Golden State -- the California Department of Public Health (“CDPH”) issued a very controversial FAQ which appeared to indicate that it would be illegal to sell hemp products in California that were manufactured out of state. The U.S. Hemp Roundtable’s lobbyists, in partnership with our friends at the California Hemp Council, went to work, furiously arguing that the FAQ contradicted the new state law, and threatened to undermine the entire effort to finally regulate CBD in the state.
The wheels of justice moved slowly, but we can now declare victory.
Today, CDPH officially revised the FAQ, making explicitly clear that out-of-state hemp products such as CBD could be sold in California. Here are the new Qs and As:
California only requires an out-of-state industrial hemp extract manufacturer to be licensed and obtain an IHPR. California does not license or require an IHPR for out-of-state manufacturers of final form products to be sold in California.
How are manufacturers, both in-state and out-of-state, required to ensure the safety of IH products sold or distributed in California?
AB 45 requires that all IH products that are sold or distributed in California shall conform with all applicable state laws and regulations. Manufacturers must include a certificate of analysis to confirm approved THC concentration and product content and provide proof that the IH product was from an approved IH growing program. CDPH may initiate an investigation to determine compliance with AB 45 or other law such as misbranding, adulteration, food manufacturing safety, etc. Enforcement may include:
- regulatory warnings
- public health advisories warnings
- civil penalties
- recall of IH final form products or extracts
- seizure and embargo of IH products
We are grateful to CDPH and Governor Newsom’s office for addressing this important issue in an effective and fair manner, and are grateful to all of our Hemp Supporters for making their voices heard on this critical issue.
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