AB 45 – Industrial Hemp Extracts in California: CBD and More!

Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
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Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck

The Gist: Assembly Bill 45, which is headed to the governor’s desk, expressly allows the sale of hemp-derived extracts, like CBD, that comply with testing and labeling standards. Although CBD products are already found in stores, these products are considered “adulterated” under existing California law. (Sherman Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Law.) AB 45 will create clarity for the industry and reassure consumers that products are tested by independent laboratories and properly labeled.

Key Points:
If AB 45 is signed by Gov. Newsom, hemp product manufacturers must:

  • Register with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and comply with good manufacturing practices.
  • Test extracts to ensure total THC does not exceed 0.3% and max cannabis contaminant levels. 
  • Link product labels to lab testing results for THC and other cannabinoids, and avoid untrue health related claims.
  • Demonstrate their hemp is grown in a state or country that has an established industrial hemp program.
  • Avoid marketing to children or pregnant women.

CDPH will be the primary regulatory agency and may regulate maximum serving sizes and adopt recordkeeping standards. The bill also directs CDPH to study the introduction of hemp cannabinoids into the cannabis supply chain.

What Products Will Be Allowed?
The following products containing hemp derivatives will be allowed to be manufactured and sold in California:

  • Food
  • Beverages
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Cosmetics
  • Pet Food
  • Inhalable products (can be manufactured and sold outside of California, but may not be sold in California until a tax is enacted)

Hemp derivatives are not allowed in alcoholic beverages or tobacco products. 

Next Steps:
This bill is an emergency statute and will go into effect immediately if signed by the governor. Once federal law is clarified pertaining to hemp-derived products, new regulations may be adopted as necessary to conform with federal law. 

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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