Ultimately, the DEA can't create new laws, they can only enforce existing laws created by Congress. However, by making an administrative change, like updating codes, they can then include a product that hadn't been defined or included before. The CBD producers believe that this is overstepping by the DEA.
Basically, the hemp folks believe that since hemp isn't specifically called out under the Controlled Substance Act (CSA), it's legal. The HIA stated, “Cannabidiol is not listed on the federal schedule of controlled substances.” The DEA disagrees and believes that because hemp comes from the same genus family of plants – it is.
The HIA stressed that the new code did not change the status of CBD, but they did express concerns about the final rule. They stated, “DEA's addition of unscheduled substances to the Administration Controlled Substances Code list is problematic. Substances that have not been properly scheduled should not be on the list as this can create confusion in the marketplace and also result in other federal agencies improperly treating legal substances as controlled.”
There are hundreds of CBD products on the marketplace and the DEA believes every sale is an illegal one. That strikes up the fear of seizures of assets, which the DEA says won't happen because it has other enforcement priorities. So for now the customers and producers can continue business as usual. Many though fear this is just the beginning of a new attack on legalization efforts.
Article in Forbes
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