SARASOTA (WWSB) - Sarasota Police are warning people to be aware of non-licensed retailers selling CBD. It’s a liquid used to treat everything from anxiety to epileptic seizures, but police said many of the people selling it are operating unlawfully.
Locals may notice the CBD stores and signs popping up all over town, but police are calling some of them a public safety hazard.
“Most of this stuff, nobody knows for sure where it comes from,” said Sarasota Police Investigator Michael Harrel, who adds that’s precisely the problem with the CBD being sold in and around town.
“We’re starting to see a proliferation of these products showing up in the city and elsewhere in the state, being sold everywhere from stand alone stores to gas stations,” Investigator Harrel said.
Though he acknowledged the CBD could come from a different plant than marijuana, it is still a cannabis product.
“According to the medical marijuana statute that we have right now on the books in Florida, a cannabis product, even with no THC can only be dispensed by one of the licensed dispensaries,” Harrel said.
Right now, SPD said there’s only one licensed medical marijuana dispensary in city limits and it’s heavily regulated and inspected.
“Their crops are inspected, their final products are inspected continuously so that everybody can be assured what they’re buying when they’re buying from these establishments,” Harrel said.
The problem with other businesses selling CBD without being a licensed medical marijuana dispensary?
“I’m sure they’re getting them from many different locations and many different distributors, some even maybe from over seas," Harrel said. "You just don’t know what’s going to be in the product. What type of oil is it? And what else is in the oil in order to fill the bottle?”
Police said it’s starting to show up from counters at the market, to stand alone stores in plain sight, so if you do decide to use the product, just beware.
Police recommend that anyone who needs CBD oil use the one licensed medical marijuana dispensary located on Beneva.