their products as hemp extracts.
Despite the ambiguity, neither
term is technically wrong—yet.
Such will only be determined
after crucial components of the
2018 Farm Bill are finalized.
However, Patterson sees the
vagueness as an opportunity
for the hemp industry to come
together to determine consistent nomenclature, which will
ultimately help drive education,
acceptance and, of course, sales.
“The way that retailers are
approaching the category, even
in the same class of trade, is completely different,” Patterson says. “While I think CBD is a buzzword right now,
we have a unique opportunity to really change the lexicon
and drift more into a hemp extract.”
Heed the Red Flags
emp-derived product terminology may, for now, be subject to a
company’s will, but there are certainly several federal regulations
that lack that same flexibility,
particularly in terms of product
labeling and sourcing.
Per the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD
Fairway Market, which recently launched its own line
of hemp-derived CBD products, said it took every precaution possible when researching the category, sourcing its
products and vetting potential hemp industry partners.
Made from a custom, proprietary blend of essential oils
and full-spectrum CBD—which includes additional bene-
ficial compounds from the hemp
plant, including CBN (cannab-
inol), CBC (cannabichromene)
and CBG (cannabigerol)—versus
other products that contain just
the isolated CBD compound,
the New York-based retailer’s
hemp-extract products are non-
GMO, pesticide-free and made
from hand-picked hemp grown
on sustainable farms in the U.S.
“We’ve invested a lot of time
and energy and research in devel-
opment with our partner, and we
stand behind it, and we’re in this
for the long haul,” says Jason Bidart, VP of private brand
programs at Fairway Market. (See sidebar on Page 32.)
Due diligence is essential, says McBride Stark of the
National Hemp Association, adding that the comprehension of the term “hemp oil” is key prior to entering the
convoluted category. “Think of CBD oil as an essential oil,
much like lavender or peppermint oil,” she says, referencing how companies in the past have incorrectly marketed
CBD oil as hemp oil in an effort to work around some of
the category’s legal challenges. She recommends retailers seek hemp companies that provide third-party testing
data and certificates of analysis.
“For a reputable store to carry CBD, if due diligence has
been done on the legal status in their state, it is important
to do due diligence in the specific company or brand to be
carried,” she says.
Proceed With Caution
ne red flag would be a company
making health claims, such as
implications that a CBD-based
product can cure an ailment or
treat a specific disease—regard-
less of the growing research
behind the health benefits of
CBD—because this directly con-
flicts with the Farm Bill’s assertion that hemp-derived
products with such claims must be approved by the FDA.
Business owners are also cautioned against linking to
scientific studies backing the product’s value; the FDA
has a limited list of studies deemed acceptable for use
in advertising. Plus, the data available now is generally
incomplete in scope, given the limited number of retailers
that have stepped into the space, Patterson says.
“The only other data that exists is that from a dispensary
perspective, and that to me is not something that should
be equated here,” he says. “That particular customer that’s
“While I think CBD
is a buzzword right
now, we have a
to really change
the lexicon and
drift more into a
—Blake Patterson, MarketHub Retail Services