The World Health Organization (WHO) is reconsidering its stance on CBD, and it’s asking the FDA for advice. The FDA in turn is asking for public comment.
The WHO will use the information to either loosen or tighten restrictions on cannabidiol (CBD), and 16 other substances, including ketamine. This process will not have a direct effect on how the U.S. federal government classifies CBD.
However, the big news is that the notice published by the FDA includes the statement, “CBD has been shown to be beneficial in experimental models of several neurological disorders, including those of seizure and epilepsy.”
That statement is at odds with CBD’s classification as a Schedule 1 drug, which by definition means that it has no medicinal benefits. That seems to pit the FDA against the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
The DEA issued a rule last December that doubled down on the Controlled Substances Act definition that says all products of cannabis or hemp plants (which are the same species) are Schedule 1 narcotics — even the non-psychoactive cannabinoid CBD. That rule prompted a lawsuit from hemp industry groups.
How CBD is treated by the federal and state legal systems is a complicated topic. Lee Johnson offers a brief rundown of the policy issues in his article, “CBD and Hemp Oil Explained.”
Opinions on CBD? Comment!
Meanwhile, the FDA is requesting “interested persons to submit comments concerning abuse potential, actual abuse, medical usefulness, trafficking, and impact of scheduling changes on availability for medical use of” CBD and 16 other substances.
If you’ve had good — or bad — experiences with CBD, you can visit the Regulations.gov docket to comment. The deadline is Sept. 13.