Carl’s Jr. is testing a CBD burger at one location in Denver on April 20.
The Carl’s Jr. Rocky Mountain High: CheeseBurger Delight features a sauce infused with CBD, a non-psychoactive hemp derivative.
The burger chain is using the test to determine whether a CBD burger belongs on its permanent menu, Patty Trevino, senior vice president of brand marketing for Carl’s Jr., told CNN Business.
“It is something that feels right for the brand,” she said. “We are all about innovation.”
The chain first decided to explore CBD in January, after it announced the addition of a plant-based burger in partnership with Beyond Meat.
“I was sitting down with our head chef Owen Klein, and we were talking about trends,” Trevino told CNN Business. After the Beyond Meat launch, they came up with a wish list that included a CBD product. “We looked at ourselves and said, you know what, let’s try.”
CBD could be a big sales opportunity for retailers, as consumers are increasingly seeking CBD products.
But even though CBD is no longer labeled a controlled substance, former U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioner Scott Gottlieb said it could take years before the agency fully legalizes CBD for use in food products and dietary supplements.
The FDA announced it will hold a public hearing on the matter on May 31.
“The public hearing will give stakeholders an opportunity to provide the FDA with additional input relevant to the agency’s regulatory strategy related to existing products, as well as the lawful pathways by which appropriate products containing cannabis or cannabis-derived compounds can be marketed, and how we can make these legal pathways more predictable and efficient,” said Gottlieb. “We hope to gain additional information and data for the FDA to consider with respect to products containing cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds, including CBD.”
Requests to make oral presentations and comments at the public hearing must be submitted by May 10. Electronic or written comments will be accepted until July 2.