ALBANY, N.Y. â€” New Yorkâ€™s fast-growing hemp industry is getting a boost from a new law allowing the state to regulate the growth and sale of cannabis-derived extracts such as CBD oil, which is soaring in popularity as a wellness product.
Broad-ranging legislation signed by Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday sets strict guidelines for product testing and labeling and requires hemp growers and processors to obtain a license through the state Department of Agriculture and Markets. It also sets registration requirements for sellers of hemp extract products. But it defers decision-making on hemp extracts such as cannabidiol, or CBD, as food or beverage additives.
Hemp entrepreneurs welcomed the new law, which was developed in consultation with industry leaders.
â€śItâ€™s very significant that we have a framework in place. Thatâ€™s crucial,” said George Sewitt, senior vice president of operations for NY Hemp Source and urbanXtracts, which grows hemp in Orange County for cannabidiol, or CBD. â€śThe most important thing is that weâ€™ll get rid of the bad actors and snake oil salesmen.â€ť
Cuomo said the state will host a hemp summit in January to further develop policies related to the industry.
â€śThe hemp industry in New York is exploding and with that growth comes a responsibility to regulate the industry in a way that helps ensure its long-term viability and protects consumers,â€ť Cuomo said in a statement.
â€śThis legislation provides important consumer protections, while giving a clear direction for the hundreds of farmers, processors and manufacturers who have made substantial investments in this new industry,â€ť said Assembly member Donna Lupardo, one of the bill’s sponsors.
More than 400 New York farms were licensed this year to grow industrial hemp, the non-psychoactive form of the cannabis plant. About 100 processors are licensed in New York to produce hemp extracts that are used in tinctures, lotions and other products.
New Yorkâ€™s legislation comes as the US Food and Drug Administration is evaluating how to regulate CBD.
â€śThe FDA is creating an untenable situation for the industry by moving so slowly,â€ť said Joy Beckerman, principal of Hemp Ace International, a New York-based hemp consulting and brokering firm. â€śNew York and other states are leading by setting standards and creating a regulatory framework for the industry.â€ť