August 16, 2021

Roundtable Submits Comments on Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act

Roundtable Submits Comments on Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act

Last month, U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer, Ron Wyden and Cory Booker introduced a discussion draft of their Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act (“CAOA”), an omnibus cannabis reform and legalization bill. We were very pleased that the draft contained a section that would ensure a regulatory pathway for the sale of hemp-derived CBD as a dietary supplement. We were concerned, however, that in the draft, hemp-derived ingredients would be subjected to a uniquely onerous regulatory regime, or in some cases, still treated as illegal substances. We strongly believe that non-intoxicating hemp ingredients should be regulated like any other botanical ingredient.

We are pleased to report that we’ve met with the staffs of all of the sponsors, and they are very open to our input. Accordingly, on Friday, we sent them a comprehensive letter outlining our concerns and offering improvements.

Our letter offers five key recommendations:

  1. Open an additional pathway for the sale of hemp extracts like CBD as food and beverage additives.
  2. Expand protections from just CBD to all non-intoxicating hemp derivatives and cannabinoids.
  3. Allow all forms of safety evaluations permitted by law to be used, not just limit manufacturers to new dietary ingredient notifications (NDINs). (This issue is particularly timely given FDA’s rejection last week of two comprehensive and compelling NDIN submissions.)
  4. Provide a more comprehensive process of determining potential daily serving limits.
  5. Ensure separate regulatory pathways for non-intoxicating hemp and intoxicating cannabis products

The legislative prospects of the CAOA are still uncertain, but as legislation makes its way through both houses of Congress, we are working very hard to make sure that the details are reflective of the best interests of the hemp and CBD industries.