Professor Erika Lietzan was quoted recently in a Philadelphia Inquirer story, “Selling CBD in food is illegal, FDA says. So why are so many retailers selling it?,” about the sale of foods and dietary supplements containing CBD, or cannabidiol, which is derived from cannabis. CBD is reputed to have health benefits, and after FDA approved a new drug containing CBD in the summer of 2018, its popularity has exploded. The “drug exclusion rule” in FDA’s statute, however, prevents any active ingredient in a new drug from being added to a food or dietary supplement. This rule is “not controversial and not something that can be debated,” Professor Lietzan explained. “The law isn’t gray at all.”
Professor Lietzan teaches food law and policy, as well as FDA regulation of drugs and medical devices, at Mizzou Law, and she was written extensively about FDA regulation of products derived from cannabis.