New CBD Testing & Labeling Law: What is it and when does it kick in?

One of the more high-profile pieces of legislation passing out of the 2019 Minnesota legislative session was a provision in the Health and Human Services Omnibus Bill imposing testing and labeling requirements on the sale of products containing cannabinoids. The provision was authored and championed by Sen. Karla Bigham (DFL-Cottage Grove), whose impetus for the law was to protect consumers by ensuring product purity and label accuracy. The Minnesota Hemp Association, however, raised concerns that the law was drafted without input from the state's hemp and CBD growers, processors, and retailers and contains ambiguous language that poses a challenge for compliance.

So, what does the new law require and when?

The new law applies to products containing cannabinoids that are sold in Minnesota on or after January 1, 2020.

The law requires the following:

1. Product manufacturers must submit samples of their products to an accredited lab to confirm that the product:

  • contains the amount or percentage of CBD stated on the label

  • does not contain more than trace amounts of pesticides, fertilizers, or heavy metals

  • does not contain more THC than is allowed under the law for industrial hemp products

2. Products containing CBD must have a label that contains the following:

  • name, location, phone number, and website for the product manufacturer

  • the name and address of the independent, accredited lab used by the manufacturer to test the product

  • the amount or percentage of CBD found in each unit of the product meant to be consumed

You can read the law itself here.

The primary concerns raised by the Minnesota Hemp Association are, first, that "trace amounts" is too vague a standard to give manufacturers assurance that they are in compliance with the law or consumers assurance about what they are consuming and, second, that the law doesn't account for the 10-15% variance in CBD concentration that is standard across the industry. The bill's author, Sen. Bigham, has said that she is open to making modifications to the law. We here at Blunt Strategies look forward to spending the summer and fall working with impacted stakeholders, Sen. Bigham, and other legislators to improve the law in the 2020 legislative session.