August is a bittersweet month. As heat waves continue to scorch certain regions of the country, this rain-free time of year also means that arms are bare and good hair days are aplenty. August also reminds us that we’re well past the mid-year mark. Reflecting on the highlights of 2018 so far, the amount of progress made by our cannabis community deserves recognition.
Legislation in favor of medical and recreational cannabis continues to sweep the world. Some of the biggest headlines from the past year include the federal legalization of cannabis becoming official in Canada, with the date for the law to go into effect recently announced to be set for Oct. 17, 2018. Provinces will have control over the details of how cannabis is locally regulated. On the other hand, progress continues to happen across the United States, with Oklahoma becoming the most recent state, as of late June, to approve medical cannabis so far this year. Overall, cannabis continues to become more widely accepted, both through legislation and everyday conversation.
Those who personally imbibe in cannabis are no longer the only ones who are part of the cannabis conversation. Within and beyond the United States, humankind at large is starting to recognize the medicinal potential of cannabis. For instance, just about everyone is talking about cannabidiol (CBD).
People who don’t personally consume cannabis are even turning to CBD for treating their pets, while people of all ages are considering how cannabis might improve their daily lives. Local coffee shops are infusing their drinks with CBD for patrons, while on a much larger level, the United States Food and Drug Administration approved the first medically extracted cannabis-based drug, Epidiolex. It’s without a doubt that one of the hottest healthcare topics right now is the single cannabinoid, CBD, which is just one of the 100+ cannabinoids that exist within our favorite plant.
As CBD in particular gains in popularity, in terms of legality, the cannabinoid is still in a state of limbo in the United States. As it can be derived both from the hemp plant and cannabis plant, the legal grey area surrounding CBD continues to be an important topic of discussion and frustration, particularly among cannabis business professionals. Like cannabis, individual states in the U.S. continue to pass legislation surrounding hemp cultivation and extraction. Michigan regulators made headlines when clarifying CBD laws in the state back in May, and most recently the California Department of Health’s Food and Drug Branch issued a memo in early July to clarify the use of CBD hemp-derived being in edible products.
The setbacks and challenges of existing within this changing industry don’t define us. Let’s continue to do what we can to bring cannabis and its many cannabinoids into the everyday.