Seven Professional Opinions on the Farm Bill's Impact on the Wellness Industry

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With CBD being hawked on practically every street corner these days, it's safe to say the ingredient is going mainstream. In fact, even Martha Stewart is getting in on the action by partnering with the Canopy Growth Corporation in an advisory capacity to help develop a line of hemp-derived CBD products. In January, the online retailer Standard Dose launched with a curated selection of topical and ingestible CBD brands that have been vetted through a three-pronged process, including testing by a third-party lab. All of these developments come on the heels of the passing of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, better known as the Farm Bill. It legalized the production of hemp, a form of cannabis and a source of CBD. Although it didn’t clarify the legal status of CBD (the Drug Enforcement Administration still classifies it as illegal), it does make it easier for CBD product manufacturers to do business.

Want to know what impact the passage of the recent Farm Bill will have on the hemp and CBD market? We asked some industry insiders to share their insights:

  • “The Farm Bill has opened the floodgates to new products hitting the market as well as retailers and spas feeling more comfortable selling CBD products. Without worries of CBD skincare products being legal to sell and the fear of being shut down by payment processors, I am seeing more estheticians and spas starting to offer CBD facials to consumers who are very excited about the holistic approach that a CBD facial offers. Major retailers are also excited about CBD. This ingredient, which has lived a bit in the shadows and online with brands like mine, are finding their way into department stores and national retailers like Neiman Marcus. This is all very exciting and has a lot of brands vying for shelf space.”—Janet Schriever, founder, Code of Harmony
     
  • “First and foremost, it will allow for more conventional banking that companies in other industries are already offered. By allowing for proper banking, we will now be able to process credit cards, pay for marketing opportunities, and coordinate partnerships with larger corporate accounts, such as nationwide spas. As of now, many hemp companies have had to fund their own ventures and keep money on hand, because banks won’t offer them an account of service. Our company alone has been shut down by credit card processing company after processing company. We’ve had spa booking sites shut down, funds withheld and never returned, paid social media ads denied, education classes flagged, and the list goes on. We’ve really had to be on our toes in order to keep the business afloat with all of the restrictions surrounding hemp. Now that companies will have access to larger platforms and resources, we will be able to reach more and have a much more powerful impact on the health and wellness industry.”—Shauna Blanch, co-owner and COO, Color Up Therapeutics
     
  • “The Farm Bill has created an opportunity for the growth of CBD products. It has made hemp farming a legitimate insurable crop that opens up consumer confidence in the plant without the stigma of it being illegal. Now, people can try CBD and scientists can more readily research the ingredient.”—Tina Zillmann, LE, CLHRP, founder, Advanced Rejuvenating Concepts
     
  • “The 2018 Farm Bill is tremendously important, because it removed hemp as a controlled substance. Prior to the new Farm Bill, there was too much legal grey area for many people to have access to it or try hemp and CBD products. The timing is perfect now though, because the U.S. and many other countries are faced with serious opiate addiction and abuse problems. Now that people have access to CBD and hemp, they get a chance to try it and experience its benefits firsthand. Once people experience how remarkably effective it can be, I believe the hemp and CBD market will explode into the mainstream in the same way we saw smartphones almost instantly become a part of everyone’s lives a decade ago.”—Chris Diaz, cofounder and CEO, Lacuna Botanicals
     
  • “The impact on the hemp and CBD market is still in flux. The recent Farm Bill legislation may have cleared up some questions, however, many are still skeptical as CBD is still classified as a Schedule 1 drug in many cases. Because of this, there is still a divide. While the forwardthinking and risk-taking entrepreneurs are still moving forward, again, there are many who are still conservative and will wait until the Feds take all CBD off of Schedule 1.”—Amanda Perlin, founder, Luna CBD Skin Care
     
  • “I think at first there will be a flood of new farms and products to hit the market due to the loosened regulations, but this will fizz out in my opinion quite rapidly. The general consumer at the moment is pretty uninformed on CBD and various continued from page 52 forms and qualities, but like all markets with proper information, the future consumer will be more aware of marketing gimmicks and have a better idea of how to spot quality sourced products. This will cause a demand for quality over quantity and some of the smaller companies trying to be a part of the green rush will be pushed out with a lack of funds to compete with large-scale manufacturing and marketing budgets.”—Twompson Prater, founder and CEO, RxCannaCare
     
  • “Right now, almost all states are allowing CBD from industrial hemp in topical products. The question becomes if CBD in oral supplements can be manufactured and sold in a particular state. The FDA oversees this type of product but does not regulate oral supplements. Manufacturers of these products are expected to follow good manufacturing guidelines. It becomes very important that customers know who they are purchasing from in all instances and especially if they are going to be using an oral tincture.”—Jean Shea, founder and president, Biotone


Don't forget about the inaugural American Spa CBD Summit, taking place at the Gaylord Rockies in Aurora, CO, August 4-6. For more info, visit www.americanspacbdsummit.com.


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