AHPA Cannabis Committee Celebrates a Decade of Industry Leadership

AHPA Cannabis Committee Celebrates a Decade of Industry Leadership

For 10 years AHPA’s Cannabis Committee has been actively involved in the regulatory, legislative, and technical aspects of moving cannabis (including hemp-CBD) into the legal marketplace

Published: Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Silver Spring, MD – The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA), the voice of the herbal products industry, celebrates the 10-year anniversary of its Cannabis Committee today. The Committee was established on March 10, 2010 to address issues related to the safe use and responsible commerce of legally-marketed products derived from Cannabis species, including hemp and hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD).

Since 2010, when it first began advocating for the legalization of hemp, AHPA’s Cannabis Committee has been a consistent voice pushing for legal, informed access while also educating the industry about best practices for herbal products.

“At a time when cannabis didn’t garner much attention from other natural product trade groups, the newly established Cannabis Committee pushed AHPA to aggressively advocate for a legal pathway to market for cannabis products,” said AHPA President Michael McGuffin. “One of the Cannabis Committee’s first actions back in 2010 was to support federal legislation to legalize hemp production in the U.S., an effort that ultimately succeeded when the 2018 Farm Bill decriminalized hemp.”

Today the Committee continues these efforts, advocating the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to use its existing authority to create a legal pathway to market for hemp-CBD products. At the same time, the committee produces guidance and in-person and online educational events to help the responsible cannabis industry understand the evolving legal landscape and develop and adopt best practices.

“When an herb experiences explosive growth, it attracts players with both short- and long-term interest,” said Jane Wilson, AHPA’s Director of Program Development and staff liaison to the Cannabis Committee since 2013. “Working to institute a level playing field through industry best practices helps ensure the cannabis market has a long future as a significant segment of the herb industry.”

The Committee has also experienced significant growth over the decade, expanding from a handful of companies in 2010 to more than 140 companies today. Committee members include the most influential cannabis companies and legal partners all working together to ensure a stable, long-term cannabis industry.

“Although we anticipated that the time had come for legitimization of cannabis products, it’s especially rewarding to see how much the industry and the AHPA Cannabis Committee have grown and evolved over the years,” said Elan Sudberg, Founding Cannabis Committee Chair and CEO of Alkemist Labs. “The cannabis industry has benefited greatly from the Committee’s leadership and the Committee has benefited in turn from the extensive input of rapidly expanding membership.”

“The Committee also continues to develop productive working relationships with a growing number of industry partners that share AHPA’s goal of providing informed consumer access to safe, high-quality cannabis products,” said Asa Waldstein, the AHPA Cannabis Committee Chair and Vice President of Operations and Regulatory Affairs at Advanced Extraction, LLC. “Working with these organizations helps create a unified and amplified voice for cannabis companies to advocate state and federal lawmakers and regulators.”

View and timeline of Cannabis Committee accomplishments >>

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The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) is the national trade association and voice of the herbal products industry. AHPA is comprised of more than 350 companies and organizations doing business as growers, processors, manufacturers and marketers of herbs and herbal products as foods, dietary supplements, cosmetics, and non-prescription drugs, and providing expert services to the herbal trade. More at www.ahpa.org

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