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Companies anxiously awaiting change in regulations to mass market CBD food and drinks

Posted at 11:49 PM, Oct 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-19 13:53:27-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — We know that cannabis- and hemp-derived products are everywhere and soon it's expected to not only be available in oils and creams, but also foods and beverages.

After years of pushing, laws around cannabis and cannabis products seemed to have changed swiftly across the country.

“The hemp derived specialty ingredients market has really exploded,” said Alexis Korybut, CEO of EcoGen Laboratories.

EcoGen is the nation’s largest manufacturer of hemp derived products. But there's still one large untapped market where the law remains frustratingly fuzzy: CBD in food and drinks

"Food and beverage are looking very hard at this industry right now,” Korybut said. “They are holding back a little bit ,or quite a bit the larger existing brands, because of the regulatory environment."

At the federal level CBD in food and drink is still illegal. This summer the food and drug administration addressed that issue explaining in a document what work the agency is doing to determine how to regulate CBD and even began taking public comments.

Even so, companies like Eco Gen are working to develop products that will be ready to go when regulators give the go-ahead. And they expect to see a lot of movement on that front in 2020

"We are working for example, with a number of beverage brands and manufacturers working to formulate,” said Korbut.” So that when the time comes, they can be deployed and distributed to the market.”

At an exhibition in Las Vegas the company explained what it’s doing to alleviate concerns about safety and quality; which has been a stumbling block for regulators.

“We have the know-how and the equipment to be able to produce products to levels of purity that we believe are far beyond anyone else on the market,” he said.” And that ultimately results in a better finished product.”