Not to be confused with marijuana, Cannabidiol or CBD is an active ingredient derived from the hemp plant. Its legislation is in the form of the 2018 Farm Bill, which allows hemp plant cultivation.
The farm bill also allows CBD companies to possess, sell, and transport hemp-derived products. For example, CBD companies that sell full-spectrum CBD oil can legally advertise full-spectrum CBD oil for sale online or in stores. However, despite the freer legislation on hemp or CBD, more businesses are still prone to getting warnings and fines from the Federal Trade Commission or the FTC, mostly due to breaking the US Food and Drug Authority CBD or cannabis regulations.
Do You Need To Comply With These Regulations?
Definitely! Did you know that an FDA monetary sanction over a broken regulation could cost you over $80,000? Or did you know that you can also get fined for selling friendly cookies or natural supplements with CBD derivatives?
Besides, many online publications report company names for the world to see, and the last thing you want is bad press for your business. If you’re planning to join the CBD industry to sell an amazing CBD or hemp product, being cautious is the way to go.
Here are five simple ways to be certain that your brand and your investment don’t go to waste.
1. CBD compliance: Any health or “medically proven” claims must include supporting, legitimate, scientific evidence or research
Understanding that hemp businesses are eager to spread the word about their quality CBD products, it’s a firm compliance regulation to not sell your product as a “cure” for specific diseases or illnesses.
Despite the many solutions CBD provides to customers, hemp is not a one-size-fits-all substance, and you cannot guarantee results. It’s best not to get carried away and leave all the big claims to the experts, not your clients or trusted partners.
Even if you believe it to be true (even if you vouch for personal experience), the law states that exaggerating CBD cannabidiol or cannabis products' benefits is against FTC regulations. Sections 5a and 12 of the FTC Act states that “unfair or deceptive acts or practices are declared unlawful.” It is why including health claims that have not been supported by reliable scientific evidence is considered deceptive.
Even if experienced manufacturers say that cannabis or CBD oil use is a cure-all, or is the cure for aging, don’t be one of the many CBD companies that have received grave warnings due to poor compliance. To play it safe, do not state any poor-supported details on your labels or packaging.
2. Packaging must include a disclaimer and all relevant information.
When it comes to CBD compliance, regardless of the high quality of your hemp products or ingredients, rules are rules, and you need to follow the CBD basics. Compliance officers thoroughly screen CBD businesses through the most obvious approach: by the information found on their labeling. Hemp or CBD companies are prone to make the same mistakes when it comes to product packaging.
Other than an ‘all rights reserved’ sign on your CBD product label or having a cannabis disclaimer, be sure to provide your customers and compliance officers all the information they need.
List all the ingredients such as the THC level and other product information necessary. Also, disclose the site location or place where the cannabis plant was grown and any relevant processes applied to the hemp product.
You can include a link or QR code to your website FAQ page or a phone number anyone can call for their CBD questions. More information is always better; when your clients and consumers get the right info about your CBD products and CBD use, the safer you are from violating state regulation. More CBD curious questions are better than having the FDA ask about your compliance.
Another important detail to include in the label of your products is an FDA disclaimer. This disclaimer should clearly state whether the Food and Drug Administration has evaluated the product.
3. Avoid the use of exaggerated or fake testimonials.
Knowing that reviews and testimonials can make or break a business, you can stay clear of breaching any or more FTC regulations by keeping customers’ reviews off your CBD product packaging (or even your hemp website).
Be wary in citing a CBD website that is unreliable or dubious; don’t link to them just because they say they’re marijuana or cannabis experts. As mentioned above, understanding that cannabidiol CBD or hemp derivatives use may benefit some consumers, not everyone will have the same results or experience.
Since you cannot control or facilitate the application or use of your hemp-derived CBD substance or CBD products, it’s best to be wary of potential lawsuits for any side effects from the hemp or CBD product or substance. If you want a hassle-free experience in the hemp or CBD products industry, keep your information objective to stay on good terms with the FDA.
4. Religiously follow Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines.
Even though the 2018 Farm Bill has put no restrictions on the use, it still understands that these FDA regulations prohibit CBD products from being labeled as dietary supplements or a food additive (even if it’s just for cookies).
Considering that CBD products’ legalization is still fairly young, there are no sufficient studies or research that the FDA accepts for these products. For example, it would be unwise to advertise full-spectrum CBD oil or any hemp derivatives as an ingredient to other food products on your website. Although CBD products are different from marijuana or cannabis use, the FDA still regulates any hemp-derived substance and products regardless of place, site, or state.
5. Explore different ways to advertise and market your products according to the FTC guidelines
It’s important to keep in mind the FTC guidelines when exploring different marketing ways and advertise your CBD products. These guidelines are set in place to ensure that companies employ well-planned marketing strategies that adhere to advertising laws and regulations. These guidelines also include examples of different situations to be mindful of as a reference.
Digital marketing is a way to help your business reach a wider audience and make your online presence known. However, marketing CBD products can be challenging because of the regulations and restrictions you must consider.
Some CBD businesses opt to do affiliate marketing, wherein famous people like influencers or celebrities mention your brand or website. CBD companies more often do affiliate marketing than direct marketing since social media platforms have specific restrictions on advertising CBD products.
Another way to put your business out there is to focus on improving your website and creating new content. This way, you get to establish your brand’s presence online while providing informational content that provides value to your readers—who are potential customers.
If you’re in the CBD or hemp industry, regularly checking the FDA website or page should be part of your routine. It pays to stay vigilant and alert for updates on THC or CBD law, the CBD industry itself, or new cannabis regulations.
Always get updates on the 2018 Farm Bill for utmost compliance, especially when more and more CBD products are introduced to the market. In fact, due to the myriad of restrictions and such, legal experts might advise you to get insurance for your business and products for extra caution.
When you are equipped with CBD industry information and education on state laws, you’ll be sure to avoid that warning letter or potential CBD monetary sanctions from the FTC. To guarantee that your CBD business utilizes different ways to market its products, make sure to partner with a digital marketing agency that understands your business and is flexible to its needs.
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