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WFCF’s Validus Verification Services Subsidiary Named Exclusive Provider of Certification Services to Hemp Growers and Processors Seeking Compliance to the Standard
CASTLE ROCK, Colo., Dec. 20, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Where Food Comes From, Inc. (WFCF) (WFCF), the most trusted resource for independent, third-party verification of food production practices in North America, today announced it has been named Program Administrator for the new U.S. Hemp Authority™ Certified verification standard. Under the agreement, WFCF’s Validus Verification Services unit was named as exclusive certification body for hemp growers and processors seeking to comply with the standard and earn the right to display the U.S. Hemp Authority™ Certified seal in their product labeling, advertising and marketing.
Participating hemp growers and processors will be educated in FDA best practices designed to reassure consumers and law enforcement that hemp-based products displaying the certification seal are both safe and legal. Specifically, the certification process evaluates quality management systems, master manufacturing records, ISO quality standards, current good manufacturing practices and employee training for best practices.
The U.S. Hemp Authority™ Certified program was developed with the support of the US Hemp Roundtable in anticipation of passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which was recently overwhelmingly approved by the U.S. House and Senate and is expected to be signed into law this month. The bill legalized hemp farming in the US following years of prohibition due to misconceptions about the product. Although a member of the cannabis family, hemp does not have the psychotropic effects of THC, which is found in marijuana, which is also a member of the cannabis family. For more information on the U.S. Hemp Authority™ Certified, go to http://www.ushempauthority.org/
Hemp has thousands of applications and is used in the production of products ranging from textiles and construction materials to biofuels and plastics. A key driver in passage of the legislation was the medicinal quality of cannabidiol, or CBD, which is finding broad market acceptance in the treatment of pain, anxiety and other medical issues. The most notable medicinal benefit to date involves treatment of Epileptic seizures, which in clinical trials were greatly reduced in severity with CBD-based drug therapy that has since been approved by the FDA.
Hemp is a highly sustainable, eco-friendly crop that requires less water to grow, is naturally pest resistant and is effective in restoring polluted soil and reducing erosion. Hemp was an $820 million industry in 2017, with more than two-thirds of that total comprised of food, supplements, personal care and CBD oil. With passage of the 2018 Farm bill, the total market for hemp-based products is expected by some analysts to grow to nearly $2.0 billion by 2022.
“Our selection to administer this program puts Where Food Comes From at the forefront of a major new health and wellness movement in the US today,” said John Saunders, CEO of Where Food Comes From. “The growing popularity of food, beverage and medicinal products containing CBD oil creates a challenge for consumers who are concerned about the origin, quality and quantity of CBD in the products they consume. The creation of the U.S. Hemp Authority™ Certified program demonstrates the hemp industry’s commitment to establishing and enforcing quality standards for growers and processors who believe consumers deserve high levels of transparency.”
Michael Mona III, Chief Operating Officer and Co-Founder of CV Sciences, a founding member of the US Hemp Roundtable, said, “We are pleased to welcome Where Food Comes From as Program Administrator for the new U.S. Hemp Authority™ Certified program. Consumer interest and demand for industrial hemp products is growing exponentially and we believe those consumers are entitled to full transparency with respect to product quality, safety and consistency. Where Food Comes From is a nationally recognized, trusted provider of independent third party verification to some of the largest food companies in America and is ideally suited to manage this important new program.”
About Where Food Comes From, Inc.
Where Food Comes From, Inc. is America’s trusted resource for third party verification of food production practices. The Company supports more than 15,000 farmers, ranchers, vineyards, wineries, processors, retailers, distributors, trade associations, consumer brands and restaurants with a wide variety of value-added services through its IMI Global, International Certification Services, Validus Verification Services, SureHarvest, A Bee Organic and Sterling Solutions units. In addition, the Company’s Where Food Comes From® retail and restaurant labeling program utilizes the verification of product attributes to connect consumers to the sources of the food they purchase through product labeling and web-based information sharing and education. Visit www.wherefoodcomesfrom.com for additional information.
This news release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, based on current expectations, estimates and projections that are subject to risk. Forward-looking statements are inherently uncertain, and actual events could differ materially from the Company’s predictions. Important factors that could cause actual events to vary from predictions include those discussed in our SEC filings. Specifically, statements in this news release about industry leadership and demand for, and impact and efficacy of, the Company’s products and services on the marketplace, are forward-looking statements that are subject to a variety of factors, including availability of capital, personnel and other resources; competition; governmental regulation of the agricultural industry; the market for beef and other commodities; and other factors. Readers should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. The Company assumes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect new information or developments. For a more extensive discussion of the Company’s business, please refer to the Company’s SEC filings at www.sec.gov.
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