The public clearly wants CBD oil, AKA Cannabidiol. Retailers want to sell CBD oil. Doctors want to prescribe CBD oil. CBD oil does not have any psychoactive affects beyond a mild relaxing sensation. So why can’t we have it? Until we can, add Elixinol to the growing list of CBD producers being hit by class action lawsuits in the wake of the FDA crackdown.

Elixinol is hit with a class action lawsuit over the legality of CBD products

Elixinol is a Colorado company, and one of the better-known producers of CBD products, including capsules, tinctures, powders, personal care and hygiene products, and even pet products.

The complaint against Elixinol (subscription wall link), however, comes from California, where a resident there charges that she would not have purchased Elixinol products had she known that they were not legally allowed to be sold over the counter. This comes on the heels of the latest round of letters issued by the FDA, which warn that CBD products are not approved for sale over-the-counter as any kind of remedy.

The FDA does not approve over-the-counter CBD – period!

As we mentioned in our recent story on the Curaleaf lawsuit, the FDA seems to have a particularly sore spot for CBD oil sold under any kind of health benefit claim whatsoever. In the FDA’s own words: “not approved by FDA for the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of any disease.” There is only a narrow list of diseases approved for doctor-prescribed treatment with CBD.

The part that confuses people is that plain old cannabis flower plant, extracts, oil, edibles, you name it, is legal to trade in several US states now. So how is it that a part of a plant related to cannabis, which doesn’t even get you high, is so heavily prosecuted? The difference is in claiming a health benefit. Apparently as far as the FDA cares you can sell it by the truckload as long as you market it as “cool refreshing hemp, it’s what all the trendy kids smoke!” The minute you say “Maybe it will help your anxiety too” – BAM! Lawsuit!

Here’s the really ironic part, according to APNews: “CBD products made from marijuana may be sold at licensed cannabis dispensaries, but CBD pulled from pot’s non-intoxicating relative, hemp, is barred from being peddled at pot shops.”

In addition, the FDA objects on the grounds that CBD “is not approved as safe.” But CBD remains on the DEA’s schedule 1 controlled substance list, right alongside heroin or LSD, which makes it all but impossible for medical testing to clear it. The schedule 1 classification is a no-exit catch-22: Once your substance is on it, you have to prove it’s safe to remove it – which you can’t do because the substance is on it.

Dozens of lawsuits issued by now

Elixinol and Curaleaf can count themselves in company with the rest of the CBD companies getting sued. The list now includes Koi CBD in California, Bhang Corp of Florida, Charlotte’s Web Holdings Inc of Colorado, CV Sciences Inc of California, and Infinite Product Co of California are just a few of the more recent class action lawsuits launched against CBD product companies.

Why bath bombs and dog treats?

Elixinol also sells pet treats with CBD. Again, we see this every time. From Elixinol’s own website, the CBD doggy biscuits are touted as: “…helping reduce inflammation, pain and other symptoms associated with common diseases and disorders.” There is a clear medical claim, and sure enough, that’s what the FDA objects to and what most of the class action lawsuits are about.

It doesn’t make sense that everyone is in such a hurry to give CBD to pets. Dogs and cats cannot talk, can not ask for CBD, and have no concept of what it is. If we have merely semi-conclusive evidence that CBD helps humans, we have absolutely zero evidence that it does anything for dogs, cats, birds, or unicorns. Why is everyone so determined to give CBD to their pets?

Ditto bath bombs: All results we have about CBD oil so far comes from taking it into your system somehow. With CBD bath bombs, you’re just soaking in it and maybe inhaling a tiny concentration of it from the steam if the bath water’s hot enough. Most of us feel a very light sensation from CBD when we vape it, so it’s hard to see where bathing in it is supposed to do anything.

We’re just pointing out: Companies that want to sell CBD, consumers who want it, and government agencies that want to regulate it, can all stand to take a big step back. Let’s handle this one thing at a time, and see if we can come to gradual agreements on the ways to apply it. Nobody on any side is making it easier on themselves with the way we’re handling it now.

Amazon currently shows over 5K hits for CBD products. Are we going to have this same fight over every one of them?

UPDATE: 3/17/20

Elixinol LLC has filed answer claiming that, in a nutshell, FDA rulings do not have the force of law behind them. It is not illegal to sell CBD products per se, merely to make health benefit claims upon doing so. This is an expected and standard defense which almost any CBD company could use. Whether that argument carries in court remains to be seen.

Care to weigh in on the CBD product controversy?

We will attempt to be the cool head of moderation here in the comments or in our forum.



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