The CBD Free-for-all Is Over for NYC Cafes and Bars

The legal cannabinoid CBD is a full-fledged phenomenon in NYC showing up in every edible possibility, from Van Leewen’s ‘Couch Potato” ice cream (5 milligrams per scoop) to CBD-infused lattes at Sweetleaf Coffee. The NYC Health Department in now cracking down on cafes and bars that serve food and drinks with CBD as an ingredient as health officials are saying that federal guidelines that prohibit such additives.

CBD has been touted for providing a feeling of relaxation without the psychoactive effects of THC and is legal to purchase and use, but now the city is taking a closer look at food additives at commercial establishments, according to the NY Post:

“Restaurants in New York City are not permitted to add anything to food or drink that is not approved as safe to eat,” a department spokeswoman said. “The Health Department takes seriously its responsibility to protect New Yorkers’ health. Until cannabidiol (CBD) is deemed safe as a food additive, the Department is ordering restaurants not to offer products containing CBD.”

The NYC Health Department began its crackdown in January and five restaurants have been prohibited from selling food and drink products containing CBD so far. A Manhattan bakery was one of the first to receive a visit, Eater reports.

A Gramercy Park neighborhood restaurant and bakery says that the Department of Health forced it to stop selling food with CBD, embargoing cookies and other pastries containing the legal compound derived from cannabis.

Fat Cat Kitchen’s co-owner C.J. Holm says that officials with the health department bagged up about $1,000 worth of cannabidiol (or CBD) edibles on Friday morning during a routine inspection, putting them in a zip-lock bag and marking them as “embargoed.” Holm is still in possession of the items.


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