Feds Clarify Hemp Policy for Alcohol Beverage Products

Earlier this week the federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) released an FAQ clarifying that the Bureau will not approve any formulas or labels for alcoholic beverages that contain a controlled substance including cannabis.  TTB notes that tetrahydrocannabinols (THC), cannabidiols (CBD), or terpenes that are derived from cannabis plants but are not specifically excluded from the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) are considered controlled substances.  They also note that the definition of cannabis in the CSA specifically excludes specific substances considered “hemp” ingredients such as hemp seed oil, sterilized hemp seeds, and non-resinous, mature hemp stalks.  Any product that contains one of these hemp ingredients must be clearly labeled in a way that the ingredient is not a controlled substance nor may it create the misleading impression that the product contains a controlled substance or has effects similar to those of a controlled substance.  The TTB also makes clear that any alcoholic beverage formula containing hemp ingredients requires formal approval from the TTB prior to use in the production of the product.