The growth of the hemp industry and greater acceptance of hemp/CBD derived products depends fundamentally on the imposition of stringent quality controls. One of the reasons that the US healthcare system refuses to adopt CBD-derived products as a part of medical treatments is the lack of quality control on CBD products. You can quote as much research as you like for the efficacy of CBD. Still, the lack of quality controls will always relegate the industry to a substandard status compared to conventional pharmaceuticals and supplements.
The latest reports on the state of the CBD and hemp industry show that these two are some of the fastest-growing sectors in the United States. The 2018 Farm Bill set the grounds for the expansion of the hemp industry to reach valuations of up to $2.6 billion by 2022 and a spike in sectoral employment throughout the country. CBD, similarly, is estimated to reach a demand valued at $24 billion in the US by 2023.
In the face of these dynamics, it’s in the best interests of both CBD product suppliers and buyers that industry standards be established to weed out substandard products from those of high-quality. Since the FDA and the US administration have so far failed to introduce such measures, the US Hemp Authority rose to fill the vacuum.
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What is the US Hemp Authority?
The USHA is the hemp industry’s response to the lack of regulation in the hemp industry. The board of the US Hemp Authority comprises of industry leaders and stakeholders, who have committed to set in place a regulatory framework that can ensure the delivery of high-quality hemp products to buyers in the US. The organization has introduced a certification process for CBD and hemp-based product manufacturers—requiring them to follow and meet certain criteria before getting board approval.
Once approved, a manufacturer can be said to follow the industry regulation standards and acquires a seal of approval that serves as verification for the quality of their products. The authority also offers a certification training program, where it educates company owners on best manufacturing and employee training practices.
What Standards has USHA Set?
The latest version of the US Hemp Authority Certification Program guidelines outlines a detailed set of criteria that all producers must meet before they can receive approval. These include directions for hemp growers, manufacturers, processors, testers and brand owners alike to bring everyone onto the same quality standards.
The 72-page document details the following:
- Personnel guidelines including—specifying a separate standard for stakeholders at each level of the hemp/CBD value chain.
- Descriptions of state laws pertaining to the industry for each stakeholder.
- Guidance on quality assurance processes and employee training to encourage internal, reliable quality assessments.
- Consolidates existing governmental regulations, to incorporate prescriptions derived out government regulations to improve organizational procedures.
Assuming that stakeholders in the hemp industry comply with the regulations set out by the USHA, they also automatically comply with all state and federal level legislation concerning hemp. As a general rule, new entrants are encouraged to seek USHA approval to improve the hemp/CBD industry supply chain and help the industry, as well as their businesses, thrive.
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