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Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wants federal rules on putting hemp extracts in food and beverages to be expedited. The Kentucky native is moving new language into a congressional spending report in hopes of speeding up the process.

The FDA previously asked for public comments related to the regulation of CBD products. A CBD food and beverage hearing also took place this year on May 31. The FDA is expecting to announce a timetable for next steps this fall. However, this means a formal regulation may not take place until 2020.

McConnell’s Proposal

McConnell is asking the FDA to “issue a policy of enforcement discretion with regard to certain products containing CBD.” He wants this done within 120 days so banks are more willing to work with CBD companies.

McConnell’s language calls for the FDA to submit a report to the committee within 90 days. The report will outline “progress toward obtaining and analyzing data to help determine a policy of enforcement discretion.” It will also detail how “CBD meeting the definition of hemp will be evaluated for use in products.” Once established, the provisional enforcement guidelines will remain until the FDA finalizes the regulatory process.

His support for hemp legalization implementation is receiving bipartisan support.

“This year in Oregon, the hemp industry may well be a billion dollar crop,” said Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley. “That is an incredible addition to income for our agricultural community.”

The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture marked up the provision of the spending report on Tuesday. On Thursday, it will go before the full Appropriations Committee.

In addition, House, Reps. Chellie Pingree of Maine and James Comer of Kentucky sent a “Dear Colleague” letter to all member of the U.S. House of Representatives. The letter encourages the FDA to issue formal “enforcement discretion” on the sale of hemp-derived CBD products.

Make Your Voice Heard

We encourage Lazarus Naturals customers to urge the FDA to take action. Click here to contact your members of Congress and urge your Senators to support McConnell’s language. The link will also enable you to urge your Congressman to co-sign the Pingree/Comer FDA letter.

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