Nowadays it seems as though there is a holiday for everything. One of the most buzz-worthy ingredients to come along in a few years has its own day to celebrate. Thursday, Aug. 8, is National CBD Day.

From bath bombs to baked goods, marshmallows to mascara, CBD is popping up everywhere. You may even find it at your favorite restaurant or bar.

CBD, which stands for cannabidiol, is a chemical compound from the cannabis plant. It’s a naturally occurring substance that’s used in products like oils and edibles. Some people use those products to relax or calm themselves. It is not psychoactive like tetrahydrocannabinol or THC.

Chris Beyer, Milkboy’s director of operations, says he thinks that bars and restaurants make it easy for patrons to try something that they are curious about without making a huge investment of time and money. They have done a few cocktail specials that have included CBD as an ingredient. He said, “CBD is something that people kind of know of but not necessarily know a lot about. People want to see what it is and try it for themselves.”

What makes CBD different from other trendy food items is that its legality falls into a gray area. Technically, up until last year, CBD was banned by FDA, although that ban was rarely enforced. The state of Pennsylvania is taking a hands-off approach when it comes to regulation. They are declining to take action until the FDA takes more of a hardline and offers more guidance.

Some people think that the mass availability of CBD might not be a good thing.

Color of Cannabis Conference founder and medical marijuana patient Tauhid Chappell, wants people to know that not all CBD is created equally.

“Most of the CBD-related products we’re seeing on the market right now are, at best, derived from hemp and, at worst, undefined (as in who knows where it’s coming from?),” he says. “There’s so much hype and marketing around it, but very few companies are underlining how they’re backing their claims of its use, and it’s doing a disservice for people who may be actively seeking alternative medicine to help mitigate symptoms of their conditions.”

One of the ways to combat these discrepancies is knowledge. The more consumers are educated about CBD, the more responsible choices they can make.

“At the end of the day it, comes down to people being safe and you can only be safe with knowledge. That’s how we ensure safety,” Beyers says.

Art in the Age store manager Emily Rodia and her crew have put on a few rounds of cocktail classes featuring CBD as the focus. They look at CBD as one more way to bring innovation to their customers while providing them with a much-needed service. She said, “We are just playing with it as much as we can and getting the knowledge out there. It’s fun to use, good for you and it’s beneficial. It’s a good stress reliever. It can help with anxiety and helps reduce pain.”

Knowledge seems to be key when deciding which CBD products are best for you and suit your needs.

“Always ask where this product came from. Always check the labeling. Look at potency, look at additives involved and items that have very little information about the product should be heavily avoided,” Chappell says.

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