Hemp is now legal in the United States after the Hemp Farming Act passed late in 2018 as a part of the Farm Bill. The legalization of hemp opened doors widely for CBD (cannabidiol) companies as the move to end prohibition added further legitimacy to the CBD market. However, after the results of a study presented by the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), lab tested CBD products should be the only sort of cannabidiol products consumers consider.
The cannabinoid CBD is found in abundance in both marijuana and in hemp, two genealogically closely related plants, but also distinctively different plants. CBD is generally thought to be the more medicinal cannabinoid found in marijuana and hemp, but much more research is needed to understand the complex cannabinoid profile of these plants. In the meantime, the CBD market is now in a sort of in-between phase as companies that want to sell their product remain in a gray area while regulations have not been completely established yet.
The VCU study tested cannabidiol e-liquid products from a company called Diamond CBD and found the synthetic cannabinoid, 5F-ADB. Synthetic cannabinoids are found in Spice and K2. These two products are commonly used by prisoners and are typically made from cleaning agents. There have been multiple reports around the country of people overdosing and even dying from consuming Spice. The only reason that Spice has ever been referred to as a synthetic cannabinoid is that it connects with CB1 and CB2 receptors in the human endocannabinoid system, the same receptors that cannabinoids like THC and CBD connect to.
Also discovered in the VCU study on the Diamond CBD e-liquids was the existence of DXM (dextromethorphan), a cough syrup that has been consumed outside of its intended purpose for its psychoactive effects for decades. Additionally, the hormone melatonin was discovered which can cause sleepiness. The VCU study clearly shows that lab tested CBD products are the only thing consumers should consider so that they know exactly what they are putting in their bodies. Consumers should search for labels and clearly see that all ingredients are listed just like they would see on any mainstream products. It behooves cannabis companies to be proactive in their efforts to implement industry best standards on their products before regulations are implemented.
In the Las Vegas marijuana market, the state of Nevada clearly mandates that all cannabis products be lab tested and that labels be placed on each and every product so that consumers can clearly see what they would be ingesting. Any additive discovered in any sort of marijuana product needs to be clearly identified by the lab testing company and placed on the label. In cannabis products such as edibles, vape cartridge oil concentrates, tinctures and drinks, vegetable glycerin and propylene glycol are commonly found, along with flavoring agents. Lab tested CBD products should be held at no less of a standard than state-legalized cannabis products. Consumers need to do their due diligence on any CBD products they purchase at this time while the federal government implements regulations.