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Rochester Tells Stores to Stop Selling Edible CBD, a Cannabis Extract

Geoffroy Van Der Hasselt/AFP/Getty Images)

The city of Rochester is telling businesses they can no longer sell edible forms of CBD -- another sign that regulations around the cannabidiol chemical remain unclear even as it grows in popularity.

The decision came following a review of FDA food service regulations by city officials.

[CBD is Budding in Popularity. But What Is The Cannabis Extract, Exactly?]

Heather Sondrini, owner of Puglife Smoke and Vape shop in Rochester, says the ban is sending up to 15% of her business to her competitors in neighboring cities and towns which continue to sell edible CBD.

“Basically what it’s going to come down to is that my lease is up in October – if I can make it until then, I might just move to a different town so I don’t have to worry about that,” says Sondrini.

She also thinks the move will hurt the city as a whole.

“They’re gonna lose money from downtown businesses cause they can’t keep any businesses downtown as it is,” says Sondrini.

The confusion around CBD regulations is due in part to its novelty, especially with CBD products classified as food.

Just last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had its first ever public hearing on the chemical.

CBD is derived from the hemp plant. It does not produce a high. It is marketed as treatment for ailments such as pain, anxiety, and sleeplessness.

Jason Moon is a senior reporter and producer on the Document team. He has created longform narrative podcast series on topics ranging from unsolved murders, to presidential elections, to secret lists of police officers.

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