Good Manufacturing Practices, or GMPs for short, are an essential basis for FDA inspections. They are used to regulate the methods, equipment, facilities, and controls used to produce processed food – and serve as the minimum requirements for making safe food products.
Although the FDA currently does not engage in any oversight of cannabis because it isn’t federally legal, that doesn’t mean that cannabis edible manufacturers can ignore GMPs. More states are legalizing marijuana every year – and it’s probably only a matter of time before federal regulations change, too. Why bother? Here are five reasons from ImEPIK.
Cannabis Legalization is Possible in the Near Future
With the recent introduction of the MORE Act, cannabis legalization may come up for a vote at the national level for the first time. Recent changes in the presidential administration also mean it’s more likely that, if passed, the MORE Act would be signed into law.
Nationwide cannabis legalization is closer than ever to becoming a reality. Many individual states are legalizing it for recreational and medical use, so you’ll need to be prepared for when cannabis becomes legal nationwide.
The FDA Will Likely be Responsible for Enforcing Federal Standards After Legalization
The FDA is responsible for regulating food and drugs, and cannabis edibles are technically both, so the FDA is expected to enforce production, labeling, packaging, and safety standards throughout the industry.
While it’s impossible to predict the exact standards for cannabis edibles, they will almost certainly be based on Good Manufacturing Practice, or GMPs, for food production. Implementing GMPS at your facility now will help you prepare and give consumers more confidence in your products.
GMPs Prepare You for Stricter Testing and Sampling
The FDA is likely to implement more strict testing and sampling criteria when it regulates cannabis edibles, especially since some states that allow recreational and medical cannabis have relatively lax requirements.
Cannabis edibles manufacturers must be ready to meet GMP guidelines. Edibles producers should also implement review and audit systems to ensure consistent product quality and safe, effective products.
You Can Maintain Proper Documentation and Record-Keeping
When your first inspection happens, your records will need to be in order – and adopting GMPs wherever possible will help you prepare for this process. While state inspections provide a similar experience, they are not the same as a federal inspection. Ensure that you keep your documentation organized enough to allow you to find the information you need about various facility aspects at any time.
You’ll Have a Properly Trained Staff That Can Pass FDA Inspections
Whether you train now or later, you’ll eventually have to train your staff on the proper procedures so that they are ready to pass an FDA inspection. By training your staff on GMPs now, you’ll get a jump on the competition – and your team members can use their knowledge to start improving product quality immediately.
Contact ImEPIK for Cannabis Safety Training and Prepare for the Future!
At ImEPIK, we offer a wide variety of training on GMPs and other food safety topics, using well-established frameworks and an online, interactive learning platform. Our online Cannabis Edibles Safety Course© will provide you and your team members with the insight, knowledge, and technical skills you need to create high-quality cannabis edibles and prepare for the federal regulation of cannabis. Contact us via our webchat or call us at 1-866-318-9855 to learn more about our interactive 100% online cannabis safety training.