Restaurants approach CBD with caution as popularity grows like a weed

NPD Group notes that 20% of consumers have tried cannabidiol, CBD, in states where it's legal.

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Cannabidiol, or CBD, is growing in popularity as consumers grow more comfortable with the hemp cannabis extract, according to new research by the NPD Group, and restaurant operators are keeping a close eye on its legal and consumer developments.

The NPD Group on Wednesday said nearly 20% of adults have tried CBD in states where it’s legal and nearly half of them have used it recently.

“This number is expected to increase quickly as CBD is appearing in snack foods and beverages, consumers are getting more comfortable with the idea and just as many people plan to try it as are currently using it,” NPD said.

“We are in the midst of one of the most remarkable and complex legal and cultural shifts in American history,” Shawn Stevens, founder of the Milwaukee, Wis.-based Food Industry Counsel LLC, told the annual Food Safety Symposium Monday in Las Vegas. “A new product. A new market. It’s unbelievable.”

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