There has been a lot of discussion recently about the California Department of Public Health’s recent FAQ about industrial hemp and CBD in food and whether or not they’re right to combine all cannabis-related products under the same regulatory umbrella. Personally, I believe that a cutting-edge state like California isn’t “off the rails” or in the wrong for regulating consumable hemp and CBD products similarly to their more controversial relatives, as dividing up the different parts of the same cannabis plant will only lead to more gray areas and unexpected changes down the road.

With clear-cut rules in place for all cannabis products, producers and consumers alike are able to make informed choices about which products are best for them within the regulated marketplace. For instance, many consumers may realize that several studies have shown whole plant CBD has a higher medicinal value than industrial hemp-derived CBD due to all of the terpenes and other compounds, while producers know that much greater amounts of high-quality CBD can be easily extracted from an entire plant than industrial hemp. By putting these two on an even playing field, it opens the door for whole plant CBD to be marketed and distributed in just as mainstream of a manner as its hemp counterparts.

This announcement is spectacular news for licensed producers in California, as it doesn’t block any of the highly regulated productions from staying in the CBD market while also outlawing the more casual “gas station-level” CBD creators. As with any medication or supplement, the Department of Public Health’s latest response simply means that the creation and distribution of CBD products should and will remain in the hands of the industry’s professionals.