Some local CBD stores nervous on new legislation

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State Assembly seeks to amend laws on industrial hemp production & regulation

GREECE, N.Y. (WROC)- The State Assembly is calling for greater regulation when it comes to industrial hemp growing and production. That has some CBD distributors getting concerned over the 15-page legislation. It outlines rules for production, distribution and sales. 

When it comes to CBD regulation, Jodi Tunision of CBDepot in Greece will be the first to tell you it’s lacking. 

“It is like the Wild West right now,” she says. 

Tunison’s store sells a variety of CBD products from treats to shampoos, to lotions and oils. Businesses like hers are taking off, but under State Assembly Bill 7680-A, only hemp extracts grown in-state can be used. Tunison carries products from across the country. She agrees with having laws and guidelines, but there’s a limit. 

“(If) you can’t carry products that weren’t grown and processed in New York State, I’m out of business,” says Tunison. 

Tunison feels that stipulation will come with added costs and taxes. She already pays $100,000 a year to Albany. She says this will ultimatley hit her, and her customer’s, pockets. 

“This is an all-natural way that we can feel better,” says daily CBD user Tony Luksic.

His wife Nikki adds, “I don’t want to take more medicine, I don’t want to keep popping pills…I want something natural that can help me.” She uses CBD products to help with her anxiety and depression. 

The bill is sponsored by Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo of Binghamton. In a statement, her office says, “There are many products in stores already that consumers have no way of knowing if they are legitimate or safe. It’s very important that we put in place regulations to not only protect consumers, but to provide guidance to our farmers and our producers.”

The bill is still in committee, but there’s a huge effort to get it passed in these final hours of the legislative session. Tunison says it’s too much. 

“Let the free market do what the free market does,” she says. 

Tunison says lawmakers are trying to strangle an industry that’s helping many using methods from Mother Nature. Lupardo’s office added the language of the legislation could change for the “clean up bill” that the legislature hopes to pass. Until all this gets sorted out, Tunison’s planned second store in Penfield is on hold. 

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