USA – Unilever-owned ice cream and dairy brand, Ben & Jerry’s has announced that it is exploring the cannabidiol space and may launch CBD-infused ice cream in the market if the proposal for its legalization is passed by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Ben & Jerry has said that it has submitted a comment to the FDA supporting the legalization, as it steps up to address the latest growing and interesting trend: cannabidiol, or CBD.
According to a recent survey by the National Restaurant Association, three in four chefs named CBD – and cannabis-infused food as a hot trend in 2019.
But Ben & Jerry’s says they’re not only eying the going trend, but also to produce sustainably sourced CBD from its home state of Vermont.
This will be in support of its linked prosperity model which advocates use of high-quality, sustainably sourced ingredients across the entire supply chain.
“We’re doing this for our fans,” said Ben & Jerry’s CEO Matthew McCarthy.
“We’ve listened and brought them everything from Non-Dairy indulgences to on-the-go portions with our Pint Slices.
“We aspire to love our fans more than they love us and we want to give them what they’re looking for in a Ben & Jerry’s way.”
The FDA has set a public hearing on the legalization of CBD-infused foods and beverages for May 31 and food and beverage manufacturers are waiting on the opportunity to exploit the segment.
As cannabis industry booms…call for strict regulation
The federal food and drug regulations prohibits adding CBD to food and beverages but is on track to review the rules given the growing interest in consumer products derived from cannabis and its components, including cannabidiol (CBD).
The public hearing is looking for information and views related to the safety of such products, as well as to solicit input relevant to the agency’s regulatory strategy related to existing products.
In case of an FDA nod, the United States is set to join countries like Canada and South Africa where cannabis use is legalized.
Consumers will be able to buy oils, supplements, soda, dog food infused with cannabis, which claims to come with health benefits such as reducing anxiety, pain and insomnia and treat conditions from Parkinson’s disease to cancer.
The public hearing is set to bring a framework on how FDA should regulate the already booming CBD industry, with some demanding strict oversight, as well as strong regulation.