Overall, 1,300 Kroger Co. locations in 22 states to carry hemp-derived topicals. Veritas Farms CEO says it will supply Kroger CBD oil topical products in the form of salves, moisturizing lotion, and lip balm. Rollout of hemp-derived CBD topicals under way on West Coast
Kroger’s Houston-area stores start selling CBD products
As part of a broader company rollout, supermarkets in The Kroger Co.’s Houston division have begun the sale of hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) topical products.
Kroger said yesterday that CBD lotions, balms, oils and creams are now on shelves at 88 stores in Houston and the surrounding area, as well as online via the Ship.Kroger.com direct-to-customer service and the retailer’s Vitacost.com e-commerce unit.
Stores in Texas got the green light to start carrying CBD items after a bill authorizing the regulated production and sale of hemp and hemp-derived products was passed by state lawmakers and enacted in early June, Kroger reported.
“Like many retailers, we are now offering our customers a highly curated selection of topical products that are infused with hemp-derived CBD,” Sparkle Anderson, corporate affairs manager for Kroger’s Houston division, said in a statement. “Our selection of CBD topical products are from suppliers that have been reviewed for quality and safety.”
Overall, the Kroger Houston division operates 110 retail food stores, 106 pharmacies and 81 fuel centers in greater Houston, southeastern Texas and southwestern Louisiana.
Texas is one of 22 states where Kroger Co. stores will sell CBD products. In June, the Cincinnati-based grocer confirmed plans to roll out CBD offerings to 945 stores in 17 states. Then in late July, vendors Charlotte’s Web Holdings Inc. and Veritas Farms Inc. announced plans to launch topical CBD products at 1,350 Kroger Co. stores in 22 states, including the Kroger, Dillons, Fry’s, Fred Meyer, King Soopers, Mariano’s, Pick ‘n Save, QFC and Smith’s banners.
Besides in Texas, Kroger said it most recently added CBD topicals at stores in Georgia, Montana, Utah and Virginia. The company noted that CBD products containing the legal limit of 0.3% or less of THC—the psychoactive ingredient in hemp and cannabis derivatives—will be clearly labeled, and before using any of these items consumers are advised to review the information on packaging.
CBD in recent years has become a popular remedy for a range of common ailments, and the ingredient has become more prevalent now that industrial hemp is permitted within federal and state regulations.
Late last year, the federal government changed its classification of cannabis with the enactment of the Farm Bill. The legislation removed hemp from the Federal Controlled Substances Act’s definition of marijuana. That meant hemp was no longer a controlled substance under federal law, even though marijuana remains a Schedule I drug.
Under current federal law, CBD and THC can’t be added to a food or marketed as a dietary supplement. The Food and Drug Administration maintains regulatory oversight of food, cosmetics, drugs and other products within its jurisdiction that have CBD, THC or the cannabis plant as an additive.
Many retailers remain uncertain about the regulatory framework regarding the sale and labeling of hemp-containing products, even as various CBD offerings continue to make their way into stores. Scientific research on CBD’s potential health benefits also is still in its early stages.
The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) last month submitted comment to FDA on the commercialization of food, beverage and other products containing cannabis or cannabis-derived compounds, including CBD. FMI said the move came in response to requests from the FDA for scientific data and information about such products and from retailers seeking more guidance.
“The current lack of FDA regulation is creating significant confusion in the marketplace,” FMI President and CEO Leslie Sarasin said in a July 16 letter to the agency. “FMI respectfully urges FDA to move expeditiously to provide additional clarity and establish a pathway forward for the use of hemp-derived ingredients, including CBD, in FDA-regulated products.”
This piece originally appeared on Supermarket News, a New Hope Network sister website. Visit the site for more grocery trends and insights.
Kroger to start selling CBD oil in 945 stores
The CBD craze could soon hit the aisles of your local Kroger store.
Veritas Farms, a vertically integrated agribusiness, is supplying its full spectrum hemp extracts topical products across 945 Kroger Family of Stores in 17 states.
“We are trying basically to provide consumers a healthier alternative to what’s currently out there,” Veritas Farms CEO Alexander Salgado told FOX Business’ Stuart Varney on Friday.
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Cannabidiol, or CBD, is the non-psychoactive compound found in hemp plants. It has been classified as a promising remedy to help treat many common conditions like pain, insomnia, and anxiety.
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Veritas Farms said it will supply Kroger with CBD oil topical products in the form of salves, moisturizing lotion and lip balm. With CBD legal in all 50 states, it is projected that the hemp extract could reach $16 billion in sales by 2025, according to a report by New York-based investment bank Cowen.
Salgado said his partnership with U.S. retailers will help his agribusiness double its first-quarter revenue of $1 million for the remainder of 2019.
“We are also working with major big-box chains, drug chains and retailers all over the country. So we are also adding companies like CVS and other major retailers as well,” he said.
Kroger to carry CBD products at 945 stores
The Kroger Co. confirmed that it plans to roll out cannabidiol (CBD) topical products to stores in 17 states.
Kroger will sell hemp-derived CBD items such as lotions, balms, oils and creams in 945 stores, Kristal Howard, head of corporate communications and media relations at Kroger, said Tuesday. She did not name the brands that will be sold.
News of Kroger’s CBD product distribution emerged this week in published reports. Howard said the rollout has begun on the West Coast, and the products will be at all 945 stores before the end of June.
The CBD products will be carried at stores in Kroger’s Atlanta, Cincinnati, Columbus, Michigan, Central, Louisville, Delta, Nashville, Mid-Atlantic, Roundy’s (Mariano’s and Pick ‘n Save), Dillons, King Soopers, Fry’s, Fred Meyer, QFC and Smith’s divisions.
“Like many retailers, we are starting to offer our customers a highly curated selection of topical products like lotions, balms, oils and creams that are infused with hemp-derived CBD,” Howard said in a statement. “CBD is a naturally occurring and non-intoxicating compound that has promising benefits and is permitted within federal and state regulations. Our limited selection of hemp-derived CBD topical products is from suppliers that have been reviewed for quality and safety.”
While various CBD offerings continue to make their way into stores, many retailers remain uncertain about the regulatory framework regarding the sale and labeling of hemp-containing products. Scientific research on CBD’s purported health benefits also is still in its early stages.
On May 31, the Food and Drug Administration held a lengthy public hearing to get a bead on current scientific data and information about the safety, manufacturing, product quality, marketing, labeling and sale of products containing cannabis or cannabis derivatives.
“Cannabis contains more than 80 biologically active chemical compounds, including the two best-known compounds: delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). If one of these compounds, or the plant itself, is added to a food or cosmetic, marketed as a drug or otherwise added to an FDA-regulated product in interstate commerce, then it falls within FDA’s jurisdiction,” Acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless said at the hearing.
“Late last year, the federal scheduling of cannabis changed. The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, or the Farm Bill, removed hemp — meaning cannabis or derivatives of cannabis with a very low THC content (below 0.3% by dry weight) — from the CSA’s [Federal Controlled Substances Act’s] definition of marijuana. As a result, while marijuana remains a Schedule I drug, hemp is no longer a controlled substance under federal law,” he explained.
Under current law, CBD and THC can’t be added to a food or marketed as a dietary supplement, Sharpless noted.
“There are real risks associated with both those substances, and critical questions remain about the safety of their widespread use in foods and dietary supplements, as well as other consumer products — including cosmetics, which are subject to a separate regulatory framework. And given the new interest in marketing cannabis products across the range of areas FDA regulates, we will need to carefully evaluate how all these pieces fit together in terms of how consumers might access cannabis products,” he said. “Nowhere is this truer than with CBD. While we have seen an explosion of interest in products containing CBD, there is still much that we don’t know.”
At the hearing, Peter Matz, food and health policy director at the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), urged the FDA to act swiftly to provide retailers more clarity and create a pathway for the “legal and appropriate sale” of hemp and hemp-derived products. He noted that there’s already “staggering” demand for CBD products ranging from food, beverages and dietary supplements to topical items like creams and lotions.
“I am here to convey the seriousness of the regulatory ambiguity facing our member companies and their customers each day as consumer demand for products containing hemp and hemp-derivatives continues to grow, as does the commercial availability of such products — especially those which count CBD as an ingredient,” Matz said in his remarks. “While most of the stakeholders participating today understand the Farm Bill did not alter FDA’s authority over the use of such ingredients in FDA-regulated products, the fact is there is mass confusion in the marketplace for the public, for suppliers and retailers, and also for state regulators and law enforcement.”