Joe: On this episode of "The CBD University Podcast" we welcome back leading cannabis attorney Rod Kight and introduce you to the new American Journal of Endocannabinoid Medicine, which Rod is a member of. Learn about its mission and how it's striving to present credible research data to the Food and Drug Administration as the FDA continues to look more into the CBD industry and its products. The research, the law, and how do you know what information is reliable? That's all coming up on this episode of "The CBD University Podcast" which starts right now. I'm Joe Agostinelli, the host of "The CBD University Podcast" if you're a returning listener, thanks again for tuning in. And if you are a new listener, weird legit found us on your favorite podcast platform of choice, we invite you to subscribe on that very same platform if you have not done so yet. You'll get notifications each week when new episodes appear. And for those of you who are returning listeners, you'll be very familiar with my guest. He was on an earlier episode earlier in the month of December, Rod Kight, leading cannabis attorney and advocate we talked a little bit about not only the industry but his rock band and his love for music. So, we welcome Rod back, a lot of good feedback on the initial episode, so we're glad to have you back.
Rod: I'm happy to be back Joe, thanks.
Joe: Any more rock gigs since we last talked?
Rod: Yes, played a couple of gigs since the last talk, I got to get it out, you know, I got to get out there and do it. So, absolutely.
Joe: That's great, that's great. So, we're talking a little bit about the American Journal of Endocannabinoid Medicine which from, you know, now on the podcast I'll just say journal so we don't have to stumble over that word anymore. Recently had its launch and first issue back in November, a little bit about the journal and how you became involved.
Rod: Right so the journal, we call it AJEM, the American Journal of Endocannabinoid Medicine. AJEM was founded on the premise that, you know, a couple of premises but the main one being that while there are a lot of studies that have been done over the years with respect to cannabis, a lot of them been done in Israel where they like...and not a whole lot in the United States because of the federal...or the schedule one legal status of marijuana. We have now have hemp and that's opened the doors considerably. But wanting to pull from those studies and also influence and create new studies and pull them into a journal that has real credibility so that physicians and medical care providers can know that they're getting good information. And to that end, it's a journal that the Editor in Chief is [inaudible 00:02:39], he's a PhD. He focuses specifically on the endocannabinoid system and cannabis medicine. And it's the only printed peer-reviewed journal for cannabis medicine in North America. I was really happy to be on it, it's a medical journal, but they needed a legal piece because in this day and age physicians and medical providers say okay, "Well, this is great, but tell me about the law, you know, how can I interact with this world?" And so, I'm on the advisory board and also write a legal article.
Joe: And as I mentioned at the first episode...see, I'm in podcast mode, the first issue came out back in November, which you had an article in, correct?
Rod: Right. So, my article is sort of what they call a place setter. So, we're about to talk about, you know, some case analysis and some facts and studies about cannabis. But by the way, it's getting into opening the door here. Here's the legal questions and issues that we plan to navigate. In fact, the opening of the sort of the inaugural issue was really cool that was done in conjunction with the CME, which is a continuing medical education class. So, a lot of different professionals, whether you're in law or real estate, or medicine or whatnot, have to have a certain amount of hours every year that they devote to continuing education and this was a medical one, and it was at Columbia University in New York, and it was done put on in conjunction with [inaudible 00:03:59], which does education across the board for all sorts of different categories, and it was fantastic. We had a really good reception, had some super high caliber speakers, Columbia University is great. But most importantly, it exposed people to the fact that now there is a journal that they can rely on for getting good information.
Joe: And we talk about education in the industry so much and that was the reason we started the podcast here at Global Widget was to provide education to consumers and the journal is just another way, you know, education really is key to provide education to consumers and medical personnel.
Rod: Yeah, it is, you know, I think education is, you know, the number one, I hate to say the obstacle, but it kind of is when I deal with, you know, regulatory agencies or law enforcement or clients that the main thing we're doing is educating and bringing them up to speed and that is absolutely the case in medicine for endocannabinoid therapies and whatnot are base therapies. And in particular, you know, you brought up the FDA. And so, the FDA is poised to be the federal or the regulatory agency that regulates certainly CBD and cannabis across the board and it's been a little bit slow on the uptake. It's a federal agency, and it just moves really slowly but what it has said is it needs good study so that it can make recommendations and create legal and regulatory parameters. And so, this is right there, this is right up that alley and say, you know, here are case studies and here's information that the FDA can use and rely on.
Joe: And FDA had some news recently that it came out with, right?
Rod: Yeah, well, the FDA has, you know, it's looking at CBD in particular, because there's a lot of what's out there in the market. It's everywhere, and people are asking questions about it. And the FDA is...has said that it's going to provide some regulations and a pathway for CBD. And one of the concerns it has is that very high doses, CBD has shown to be toxic, at least in one of the studies. And so, it wants to know those toxicity levels and how it can make reservation...recommendations. And so, it discussed that the concern I think is not so much in taking a, you know, one dose of CBD and suddenly you're toxic, but that, you know, people use it in different ways. And so, they don't know if a person of X size and weight is using, you know, a bath bomb in the morning and then a, you know, chapstick during the day, and then a pain cream later in the day, and the tincture at night and some whatnot and vaping throughout the day, you know, is at some point they're going to be hitting an exposure level that may provide some areas for concern. And so, the FDA just put that out, they said, this is one of the things that we're looking at. And to be clear in the study that these liver toxicity results came from the doses the animal were receiving that case were very, very high, you know, is we're talking enormous amounts of CBD. And in most, you know, compounds, whether it be aspirin or even water at very, very high doses, our bodies can't metabolize them or deal with them well, and the FDA uses trying to put parameters around that.
Joe: And shifting now back to the journal obviously as a manufacturer and distributor of hemp-derived CBD products we will not and cannot make any medical claims. However, the journal can certainly communicate some of the medical research that has gone into the industry, correct?
Rod: Right. Well, the thing is...the reason that the FDA prohibits making medical and therapeutic claims is because in order to do that, or when companies or products make claims, the FDA treats them as a drug and there's only one approved drug and it's for some very severe cases of epilepsy. And so, CBD companies cannot make medical claims. But the fact of the matter is, is that there is lots of peer-reviewed evidence and there have been lots of studies about cannabis, including CBD as a medicine. And so, while companies cannot and should not make any claims, the research and the, you know, disseminating the findings for different areas in which these products can be helpful is certainly really important.
Joe: You know, one thing we can discuss in alignment with the FDA is, you know, everybody in the industry faces that federal guidelines and laws and how the FDA eventually is going to govern things. As we get into 2020, what are some of the things that folks should look out for, you know, in the year ahead as this industry continues to evolve?
Rod: Yeah, well, I think 2020 is gonna be a big year. For one I think, you know, we've seen CBD be sort of the boom, it's the darling of the natural products industry, but I think we're going to see it grow and become really truly mainstream. It's gonna be in products across the board. So, I think we can expect that and on a regulatory front, I think we can expect the FDA to continue to move forward, probably slowly and putting together some regulations. We're gonna see probably some consolidation in the industry. As it grows, we're gonna see some smaller companies change whether that means that they're no longer able to compete or whether it means that they are formed joint ventures or get acquired or merge with larger companies. And we're gonna see some consolidation in the market, just like any industry, whether it be the auto industry, the shoe industry, or natural products industry, this is a new industry that's gonna follow the same curves and arcs that those other industries have. And so, I think we're gonna see a very transformative year for CBD, and also think we're gonna see it emerge as more of a global powerhouse. So, we're having a lot of issues with regulatory status and some growing pains in the United States. Well, other areas of the world are going through some similar transformations as well. The European Union, in particular, has an FDA like agency and FDA like regulations. South America is becoming a big...poised to be a powerhouse in many ways, Southeast Asia, Australia. So, as these countries and regions come online, this is gonna...CBD is gonna be a truly global commodity in the industry.
Joe: And the journal moving forward in 2020, is it gonna be a monthly publication quarterly? Is there...
Rod: You know, I don't know the publishing timeline, it's not going to be monthly because, again, it's high-quality commentary and studies and it's hard to put that out on our monthly...I think it's gonna be roughly quarterly, maybe a little bit more frequent than that. And one of the things that I'm happy about is that the medical journal has such an interest in the legal piece of that is that there are...we're looking at focusing on a legal-specific journal that will address the medical issues but also address and focus on the legal issue. So, stay tuned.
Joe: And give a little bit of a self-plug here for consumers who wanna stay on top of all of your articles, and what's the website they can visit for your blog to get notifications every time there's a new article, either from yourself or one of your colleagues?
Rod: Right. Well, it's cannabusiness.law, that's my website. And I have a blog and I've been writing on cannabis and in particular hemp and CBD issues for years now. And what my blog tries to do is keep people informed and not just, oh, here's the latest and greatest in the news but here's the latest and greatest in the news that's something you might have read about, here's our analysis of why that's important and the issues you should be thinking about. So, please, I encourage people to go to my blog, we try to write about important emerging issues in the hemp, CBD and cannabis space.
Joe: And as these issues continue to emerge, and the industry continues to evolve on an almost daily basis, I'm sure we're gonna have you back on the podcast throughout 2020, it's not getting...it's not easy to get used to saying that. I can't believe it's 2020 already, it's crazy.
Joe: So, I was always striving for 20/20 eye vision and now it's the year 2020.
Rod: Now it's the year 2020. Well, I'm always happy to come and chat with you, Joe. This a great podcast and Global Widget is doing some really amazing things.
Joe: Well, thank you for all that, we look forward to having you back again. That's again Rod Kight, industry-leading and award-winning attorney, advocate, author. And we just talked about a little bit about the journal that he is now gonna be writing on and then obviously how to follow along with his blog and website for all the latest information in the industry, we'll, of course, have been back throughout 2020. We are glad that you tuned in to this episode of "The CBD University Podcast." As I mentioned on the introduction if you have not done so yet, we invite you to subscribe on your favorite podcast platform of choice and we are on a number of those platforms now including Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, Spotify, SoundCloud, Lipson, RadioPublic, TuneIn Radio and new for 2020, iHeartRadio. So, follow us on your favorite podcast app of choice and hit that subscribe button to get notifications when new episodes come out each week. I'm Joe Agostinelli, the host of "The CBD University Podcast." Thanks for listening.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. CBD products are not intended to treat, cure, or prevent any disease or condition. Always consult your personal physician about CBD and using CBD products. CBD should never be used by anyone under the age of 18. This podcast is not intended to provide legal advice regarding the legal status of CBD and CBD products.