Cannabidiol or CBD has not yet received the green signal of legislation with different contradictory options further adding up to the doubt. However, this is not stopping restaurant owners from coming up with their very own take on CBD in the form of intelligent infusions. Cafes and eateries in San Luis Obispo County have already started infusing this feel-good ingredient in its platter to lure in a wider consumer base.
Notices & Warnings
Warnings have been recently mailed by the Food Inspection Department of SLO County to the owners of more than 1600 local cafes and restaurants for cautioning them about the illegality of adding hemp and CBD to their menu chart. SLO Environmental Health Supervisor Laurie Salo was quoted as saying that, “While there’s a lot of CBD products out there that are commercially available, nonetheless, it’s currently not legal to sell food or drinks with CBD.”
The warnings sent out by the SLO Food Inspectors has been at the receiving end of mixed response from the café and restaurant owners. Manager of The Neighborhood Acai and Juice Bar off Foothill Boulevard revealed the warning received on Friday and also shared that they will be not be producing their highly popular CBD-infused juice any more.
Everett Marr, the manager of Seeds on Garden Street in downtown San Luis Obispo which serves acai bowls with a dash of pepita seeds, almonds and berries have revealed that, “We have a hemp protein that we add as well.” Apart from adding a satisfying crunch, this is also known to usher in wholesome health benefits. Everett also added that, “We have Whaleird Kombucha with CBD on tap. That’s been super popular. We can barely keep our kegs full around here.”
Bliss Café which is located just across the way offers hemp in its bowls just like Shine Café in Morro Bay and Joy in Shell Beach. Salo was quoted as saying that, “When we do run across it and we have, we ask them to remove it.” Although CBD and hemp has gained record popularity off late, it is still not a legal choice for being added in food and drinks.
Confusion About Legality Of CBD
In stark contrast to THC, CBD which is derived from cannabis does not make people high. However, it can be very effective in gaining an edge over stress and anxiety. FDA currently restricts the sale of CBD, THC and hemp in food and drinks at retail stores and dispensaries.
The California State Attorney General’s Office had issued a letter dated January 24 for throwing further light on this issue by explaining that, “Although California currently allows the manufacturing and sales of cannabis products (including edibles), the use of industrial hemp as the source of CBD to be added to food products is prohibited. Until the FDA rules that industrial hemp-derived CBD oil and CBD products can be used as a food or California makes a determination that they are safe to use for human and animal consumption, CBD products are not an approved food, food ingredient, food additive, or dietary supplement.”
The 2018 Farm Bill legalised hemp following which California legislators have been trying to legalize the usage of hemp and CBD in various cafes and restaurants. Salo pointed out that the hasty distributors are providing local businesses with an unlawful head-start. He concluded by stating that, “We have recipients here, stores and small facilities that have received it and advised, ‘oh it’s OK, because it’s not THC’, but that’s not exactly correct.”
Salo revealed that her office sends immediate alerts to state officials whenever they get to know about distributors misleading local business owners. Although café and restaurant owners who will continue to have hemp and CBD infused items in their menu shall have their items confiscated, no fines have been calculated till now.
If the infusion of hemp and CBD in food and drinks get legalized, then it is bound to usher in good news for the managers of local eateries like The Neighborhood, High Street Deli and Seeds. Marr concluded by saying that, “Adding CBD to smoothies, bowls, other things, would give us that infusion of health trends we really accelerate in here.”