FDA, FTC slap seven CBD firms with COVID-19 warning letters

By Hank Schultz

- Last updated on GMT

©Getty Images - serggn
©Getty Images - serggn

Related tags Cbd CBD and Hemp COVID-19 hemp extracts Hemp coronavirus

Seven marketers of CBD products received warning letters for making COVID-19 treatment claims as part of the ongoing joint FDA/FTC enforcement action.

The seven companies received warning letters dated March 28. The combined enforcement action now totals 492 warning letters sent to companies since the start of the global pandemic more than two years ago.  The warning letters including companies making personal protective equipment, medical devices and other products as well as dietary supplements.

The seven companies are Functional Remedies, LLC dba Synchronicity; Greenway Herbal Products, LLC dba Tanasi; Heaven's Organic, LLC; Nature's Highway; Cureganics; CBD Social; and Upsy, LLC.  The companies make a range of CBD containing products ranging from full spectrum hemp oils, to ‘full spectrum CBD blend’ to products made with CDB isolate.

Wide array of noncompliant claims

According to the warning letters, among the statements found on the companies’ websites and social media pages were:

  • “[A]n increasing number of doctors and researchers are exploring CBD for COVID. CBD may help patients cope with symptoms and mitigate the long-term pulmonary damage of the virus.”
  • “Studies Show CBD Compounds Prevent COVID Cells From Replicating.”
  • “Compounds in cannabis can prevent infection from the virus that causes Covid-19 by blocking its entry into cells.”

FDA gives firms cited with such COVID-19 claims transgressions 48 hours to respond to the warning letter.  FTC is less lenient.  It mandates that firms cease making the claims immediately upon receipt of the warning letter and notes that a  $46,517 fine per violation may be assessed.

Marketers of CDB products have not benefited from the pandemic​ in the same way as many dietary supplement companies have, especially those that market any products that contain immune health ingredients.  This has led some companies to broaden their product range to include products targeted specifically at immune support, as CV Sciences did with a product that won a NutraIngredients-USA award in 2021​.

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