Steve Northrup, a health policy and politics expert and founding partner of Rampy Northrup, said that because it has been studied and marketed as a drug, CBD cannot be introduced into interstate commerce as a food product or dietary supplement. Stakeholders want to change that.
“The last thing we want is for consumers to get hurt.”
Northrup expressed frustrations in the legislative process, including the need for the FDA to set levels for CBD products. Northrup said when it comes to creating a regulatory pathway for CBD, the FDA is dragging their feet. The FDA blames lack of resources and complicated science surrounding CBD.
Stakeholders also voiced concern about imported dietary supplements. NPA’s President and CEO Daniel Fabricant highlighted the need for new dietary ingredient enforcement and said that if the industry has to be accountable, so should the regulator.
“We have imports coming into the country related to dietary ingredients that have not submitted and NDI and yet FDA just says ‘hey, no problem.’”
Another topic of interest Fabricant spoke about is the need for health savings accounts to allow dietary supplements to be considered medical expenses, especially as many Americans cope with COVID-19 anxiety.
Fabricant said requiring prescriptions for natural products, just sets up patients to not disclose to their doctors what supplements they are taking.
Whether it be setting levels for CBD, enforcing NDI’s or expanding health savings accounts, stakeholders are intent on moving full steam ahead, despite being in the midst of uncharted territory.
“Just because Congress is preoccupied, doesn't mean we should take our foot off the gas on the issues — and we won’t,” said Northrup.
For more important information on the COVID-19 pandemic, the NPA created a resource page for the natural products industry.