The CBD market is exploding across the country and across Florida after state lawmakers made it legal to buy and sell in the Sunshine State this summer. But, as the popularity grows, the Federal Trade Commission is warning businesses against making health claims about their products.
The FTC sent six warning letters to companies over the past six months telling them to change the way they’re advertising products. That includes Fort Lauderdale based PotNetwork Holdings, which owns the website www.diamondcbd.com.
CBD is a compound that comes from the cannabis plant but, unlike marijuana, it doesn’t make a person high. Consumers can now buy CBD in products ranging from oils, to gummies to patches. However, it’s not a dietary supplement, and not approved by the FDA as a drug, so companies are not allowed to make health claims about the products.
In the warning letter sent in March of this year, the FTC said PotNetwork Holdings listed numerous studies on its website claiming CBD can help with everything from diabetes to cancer to Alzheimer’s disease. The letters state the various companies have 15 days to let the FTC know what they’re doing to fix the violations.
NBC 6 reached out to the South Florida company and received this response:
"PotNetwork Holdings and DiamondCBD take the health and safety of its customers seriously. Upon receipt of the March 2019 FDA/FTC letter we took immediate action to review our website. In an abundance of caution, we removed the information cited in the letter. We provided a written response to the letter in April 2019 and have not been contacted since. We continue to provide our customers with a variety of high quality CBD products."
It does appear the company has removed the information from its website.
In the past, the FTC publicly named the companies that received warning letters. Consumers were able to find that information online and on the FTC’s website.
The federal organization said it is not publicly identifying the latest three companies that received warning letters this month. When asked why, an FTC spokesperson said they only release that information if enough reports ask for it.
He said the more requests made for a document, the more likely the agency is to make the information available to the public.
NBC 6 has submitted an official request.
This story is from our sister station, NBC Miami. Click here for more investigative stories from NBC stations across the county.