SAINT ANTHONY – If you shop in CBD stores, be prepared to pay in cash.
Most credit card providers do not work with stores that sell cannabidiol or CBD products because they consider the CBD business “high risk” due to the few regulations placed on it.
Anxiety, depression, and pain are ailments that users of CBD products claim the oil improves. And now Texas residents can legally use CBD products that contain 0.3% or less tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, after Gov. Greg Abbott signed House Bill 1325 into law this month.
THC is the compound in cannabis that gives users a high. The low concentration in CBD products means users can’t get high.
Although these types of products are now legal, the CBD business continues to face a financial hurdle.
“These are not really regulations on the cannabis side. Really more banking regulation is really partly the No. 1 issue we have to deal with every day,” said Charles Rodkey, owner of Rodkeys CBD store in north San Antonio.
Rodkey said if you go to any CBD store across the country, you’ll most likely need cash. His store accepts credit cards and cash, but he brought an ATM into the building because he never knows when the credit card companies will decide to throw them away.
Rodkey said banks would also refuse to open accounts or make loans to businesses in the CBD.
Currently, the US Food and Drug Administration does not regulate CBD products. In Texas, the Department of Health recently became responsible for regulations with the passage of HB 1325.
Rodkeys only opened a month ago, but the owners have been in business for five years. They are licensed by the Texas Department of Health because they also manufacture many of their products in San Antonio.
Prior to the passage of the bill, licenses were not required for retail CBD businesses, only CBD growers.
Rodkey hopes that once the regulations go into effect, banks and credit card companies will join them financially.
“I think the Texas Department of Health is going to take over a lot of the retail sales of CBD and regulate that, that’s going to make a big difference in terms of legitimacy,” Rodkey said.
When that will happen, Rodky says, is still up in the air.
“We’ll see. It’s still going to be a little bit of the Wild West here,” he said. “I think it’s going to be years before we know.”
A recent Forbes article says the CBD market could become a $20 billion industry by 2024.
HB 1325 also legalizes the cultivation of hemp in Texas. However, the steps farmers must take to become legal hemp growers have not yet been put in place.
Rodkey said that once hemp cultivation takes off in Texas, he believes it will catapult the CBD industry even further.
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