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Most of the world can agree that cannabis extracts, and CBD in particular, is not only harmless but also possess strong potential as therapeutic agents for a wide variety of diseases and disorders. The Federal Government of the United States, however, still considers cannabis extracts and CBD both to be Schedule I compounds. CBD naturally occurs in two sources, cannabis (C. sativa) and hemp (C. sativa L.). While cannabis is generally illegal to grow and propagate outside of markets where it has been specifically legalized, hemp-derived CBD is legal in most of the world not only for personal use but also for international commerce. The DEA has further clarified that it is not the cannabinoids themselves that are illegal, but rather their source. CBD has therefore been gaining traction as an unregulated therapeutic commodity. With Canada becoming the second nation (and the first G-20 country) to legalize recreational cannabis use in the world, the future legality of cannabis-derived CBD in the United States is uncertain. On its website the FDA asserts that it supports research into medical cannabis, and that persons can submit applications for approval of research by the FDA and the DEA. However, scientific researchers studying cannabidiol must meet federal security requirements and follow federal practices. Some scientists have said this has slowed research supporting medicinal benefits of cannabis. The conversation will center around the medical and scientific rationale for listing cannabidiol separately from psychoactive cannabinoid extracts, and for rescheduling CBD and cannabis from Schedule I to protect public health and safety by establishing strict quality assurance and safety requirements.

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