Studies project a hemp CBD market for food and beverage at more than $2 billion next year; California is falling behind of this revenue train.
By Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, Winters
Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry represents the 4th Assembly District, covering all or parts of Yolo, Napa, Lake, Sonoma, Solano and Colusa counties.
Policymakers are exploring many ideas for stimulating our depressed economy, but we also need to embrace realistic, existing opportunities to bring new tax revenues to our state and local governments.
Leading the way is a proposal I have been working on for two years, allowing hemp CBD to be used in food, beverages and cosmetics. National studies project a hemp CBD market of about $20 billion over the next few years, with food and beverage alone in excess of $2 billion next year. California is falling behind 21 other states that have jumped on this revenue train.
Regardless of the legality, Californians are purchasing these products at accelerating rates. The CBD widely available today is sold without the expected “health safety stamp” that comes with our state’s strong consumer protection standards. This lack of regulation restricts legal business activity and harms consumers. At 12-15% of the national market, California should be in the vanguard of safely manufacturing, distributing and retailing these products.
The hemp CBD industry means new revenue and jobs, combined with consumer protections. We can’t allow Californians to continue purchasing products from an unregulated market, and we can’t afford to leave money on the table.