On July 31, 2018, Todd Harrison was quoted in Natural Products Insider regarding the likeliness that the federal government may legalize the growing industry selling cannabidiol (CBD) in dietary supplements as companies go to market.
The legalization of CBD in dietary supplements has been controversial due to a provision in the Federal Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act (FDCA), which protects the investment required to develop new pharmaceutical drugs shown to be effective and safe. The debate could end up in federal court, leading to years of uncertainty over the legality of CBD in supplements, stymieing investment and research into the compound's potential benefits to general health and wellness.
There is a possible opportunity to settle legalization: petition the government, requesting the secretary of HHS use his authority under the FDCA to issue a regulation following notice and comment, finding CBD lawful in dietary supplements.
Commenting on policy considerations in favor of making CBD lawful in supplements, Mr. Harrison cited evidence that CBD has health benefits beyond the treatment of disease. He noted that GW's drug is for a narrow indication so it "would be absurd from a policy standpoint to exclude its use for general health."