Local News

As state regulators crack down on CBD, business owners try to see through haze

Posted February 10, 2019 8:21 p.m. EST
Updated February 12, 2019 6:51 p.m. EST

— State regulators are launching a crackdown on hemp products that are not allowed under federal law. They're going after certain items that contain CBD - which is a component of cannabis.

The Hemp Boutique in Cary sells CBD in a variety of forms, including dark chocolate, honey sticks, coffee, cheesecake-flavored bars and gummy worms.

Alyssa Schuster said she visits the store five times a week because the CBD helps her sleep.

But after seeking guidance from the feds, state regulators say the Food and Drug Administration considers CBD a drug and bans it from being added to food.

Schuster said this disappoints her.

"I was so sad. I wanted to come in here and talk to them about it because they're the ones that sold me all their gummies and everything," she said.

Assistant Agriculture Commissioner Joe Reardon says CBD packaged in food could end up in the wrong mouths.

"We're seeing it in ice cream, we're seeing it in lollipops, we're seeing it in a lot of products that are sold to children," he said.

Products are barred from claiming that CBD can prevent, treat or cure any disease.

A news release from the state agriculture department says failure to comply could result in "seizure of products."

Reardon said he wants business owners to understand the foundation of the law and make good business decisions, but Roland Jones, who owns the Hemp Boutique, said the law has been hazy.

"Gray areas," he said. "If I have to stop selling certain products, I will to comply with the laws of North Carolina."

State agriculture field inspectors will be on the lookout for CBD products that violate the law. Consumers can contact the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services if they have any questions or complaints about what is being sold.