Iowa and New Hampshire are both taking steps to regulate cannabidiol (CBD) products, drawing comment and reaction from industry associations.

The New Hampshire House of Representatives has proposedHouse Bill 272, a bill which would:
  • Allow the sale of products containing hemp-derived CBD
  • Require products containing CBD to be registered annually by the manufacturer
  • Create a position in the Department of Health and Human Services to perform inspections related to those registered products
Additionally, the bill allows CBD-infused foods as long as the CBD in question was produced in-state, dictates labeling and testing rules, and establishes that product registration will cost $100 per product per year. The law is set to take effect July 1, 2022.

The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN)submitted commentsto the NH House of Representatives in response, urging the state to model its requirements for hemp-derived CBD after federal law, a level of standardization that would protect consumers and manufacturers alike. In the comments, Amanda Darlington, Director of Government Relations, wrote: “While we await clarity at the federal level, CRN also supports the promotion of state laws and regulations regulating hemp-derived CBD dietary supplements in a manner that is consistent with federal requirements. CRN continues to work with Congress to support federal legislation… that [directs that] CBD be recognized as a lawful dietary ingredient to be regulated by the FDA.” The legislation, Darlington explains, will require CBD to adhere to legal requirements for manufacturing, labeling, promotion, and usage. “We expect Congress to consider legislation addressing this critical issue early in the 117thsession and strongly encourage states looking to adopt their own hemp-related regulatory structures to fashion ones that would be consistent with that federal framework,” she continued.

The Natural Product Association (NPA) reacted in a press release, noting that New Hampshire is the latest in a line of states to fill a federal regulatory void. “The states continue to demonstrate that it is possible to take action on CBD products while managing the COVID-19 health crisis,” said Kyle Turk, Director of Government Relations, in a press release. “The pandemic is not an excuse for the FDA to skirt its responsibilities to protect public health in other areas. We applaud the states for taking action to regulate CBD, and we will continue to lead the conversations guiding states to establish a regulatory pathway for CBD. Over the last two years, NPA has worked with policymakers across the country, including in New Jersey, Utah, Rhode Island, and Georgia, to establish a regulatory framework for CBD products. No other organization has had a greater impact shaping CBD policy at the state level than NPA.”

Related: CRN “Disappointed” with FDA Withdrawal of “Cannabidiol Enforcement Policy; Draft Guidance for Industry” FDA Releases Update on CBD; CRN Calls It an “End-of-Administration Desk-Clearing Exercise” NPA: NY Legislature Must Reject Proposal to Age-Restrict Supplements

When it comes to Iowa’s Senate File 43, CRN had more specific recommendations. “CRN encourages deleting the bill’s proposed ‘New Section 126.4 Hemp products and consumable hemp products—retail sales—claims’ and references thereof,” Darlington wrote in CRN's comments.The association's concerns include:
  • Senate File 43 states “Unless a state or federal agency has substantiated and approved the efficacy and safety claims of a product…” while CRN notes that supplements are not regulated at the state level, but by FDA, and that supplements are not “approved,” but rather must undergo the NDI process.
  • Senate File 43 states that a person selling a CBD product “shall include on the product’s principal display panel, a statement that the product may or may not contain the ingredients stated on the label,” which, as CRN notes, confuses the consumer while failing to protect against adulteration or false claims.
  • Senate File 43 states that “The statement required under this section shall be developed by the board of pharmacy and shall be consistent with the rules adopted by the department of inspections and appeals,” but CRN explains that labeling requirements for hemp products are regulated by state departments of health and/or departments of agriculture—not the board of pharmacy, which “should not have jurisdiction over any type of regulation” regarding hemp products, because hemp products are not drugs. Darlington adds: “…nor is a public health or consumer interest served in attempting to regulate these products as such.”