Dierbergs Markets has rolled out hemp-derived CBD oil products to all 25 of its stores in Missouri.
The cannabidiol (CBD) products began hitting store shelves this spring, Dierbergs said yesterday. The Chesterfield, Mo.-based supermarket chain now carries items from such national brands as Charlotte’s Web, Plus CBD Oil, RE Botanicals and Sagely Naturals.
“Customers were asking for CBD oil. The interest was significant enough that we felt it was time to bring the product in,” Ron Edelen, nonfood category manager at Dierbergs, said in a statement. “Now we hear from customers who appreciate its availability in our stores.”
Stores each offer a selection of at least 35 CBD oil products, which are merchandised in dedicated display cases for easier shopping and comparison, according to Edelen.
Dierbergs’ inventory from the four brands includes CBD sprays, drops, capsules and softgels, as well as hemp-derived CBD oil in balms, creams and other health and beauty aids. Stores also carry pet-friendly CBD, which the retailer said is increasingly being prescribed by veterinarians for the products’ purported calming effects on cats and dogs.
Besides at stores, customers can buy the CBD products from Dierbergs online via Shipt and get same-day delivery from grocer in as soon as an hour. Dierbergs operates 24 supermarkets in the St. Louis area and one at Lake of the Ozarks in central Missouri.
Despite rising consumer interest in CBD products an alternative health care solution, scientific research on CBD’s medicinal qualities is “still in its infancy,” according to Dierbergs. The company noted that CBD is one of over 100 naturally occurring phytocannabinoids found in hemp and all cannabis plant strains, and that agricultural hemp-derived CBD — legal in all 50 states — doesn’t produce the psychoactive side effects associated with other cannabis products.
The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) said it regularly fields inquiries from members seeking more clarity about the regulatory framework for the sale and labeling of hemp-containing products.
“A challenge for us is that the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018, or Farm Bill, contains several provisions that allow for the cultivation, production and commercialization of industrial hemp and hemp-derivatives like CBD. However, the new law did not alter FDA’s authority over the use of such ingredients in FDA-regulated products, not to mention the role of other regulatory agencies and the states,” FMI President and CEO Leslie Sarasin said in a statement on Friday. “Food retailers recognize the confusion among the public, suppliers and retailers, and state regulators as a result of the Farm Bill language.”
At a May 31 Food and Drug Administration hearing on cannabis and cannabis-derived products, FMI Food and Health Policy Director Peter Matz underscored the growing demand for and commercial availability of products containing hemp and hemp-derivatives, especially CBD.
“From ingestible products — including foods, beverages and dietary supplements — to topical items, such as creams and lotions, the demand for CBD products for both human and animal use is already staggering and growing rapidly. In fact, just last month, a Consumer Reports survey found that more than a quarter of Americans say they’ve tried CBD, while one out of seven of those people said they use it every day,” Matz said at the FDA hearing.
“While we want to be in full compliance with all FDA requirements, we also want to ensure our members have appropriate assurances that the products they are selling are both safe and being sold appropriately,” he added. “Having said that, FMI sees the regulatory challenges surrounding the legal and appropriate sale of hemp and hemp-derived products as a critically important policy issue. And given the prevalence of these products in the marketplace, we respectfully urge FDA to move swiftly to provide additional clarity and establish a pathway forward.”