Maine orders CBD edibles removed from retail stores

Authorities in Maine have shocked retailers and hemp farmers by ordering CBD edibles be removed from stores amid concerns that cannabidiol still is not a federally approved food additive.

Last week, health inspectors began ordering stores to remove “all foods, tinctures and capsules” containing the extract, the Portland Press Herald reported.

Other nonedible CBD products, such as ones that can be smoked or vaped or applied topically, are not affected.

Medical marijuana patients can still buy oral CBD products.

“Here we are, ready to pull the big trigger on the hemp revolution, and Maine wants to take away our gun,” Gary Runnells, owner of Newport-based Endless Herbs, told the newspaper.

While retailers now have to worry about which products they can and cannot sell, hemp farmers in the state are also going to feel the pinch.

Maine started experimenting with hemp production in 2016 when there were just two licensed farmers cultivating a quarter of an acre.

As of the end of 2018, 82 farmers were working 900 acres in the state.

Similar reports have arisen in Iowa, where only five dispensaries are permitted to sell hemp-derived CBD products, and Texas, which has long been a battleground over the product’s legality.