2021: The Year in Cannabinoid Ingredients

By Caliper Team

December 7, 2021
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It’s been a year! Here’s a walk through the most notable events that affected the cannabinoid ingredients world in 2021, with a few rambles along the way. 


  • President Biden is sworn in on January 20, and with that, renewed hopes for more coherent CBD regulatory policies. 
  • Another clinical milestone for Caliper! Colorado State University researchers publish a Caliper Pharmacokinetic study in the prestigious journal Pharmaceuticals.


  • The Hemp and Hemp-Derived CBD Consumer Protection and Market Stabilization Act of 2021 (HR 841) is introduced in Congress. If passed, it would allow the use of CBD (and other ingredients derived from hemp) in dietary supplements.
  • Alternative beverages—including those made with CBD—doubled their share of the adult beverage market volume in the past 5 years, according to a report from the Beverage Marketing Corporation
  • “Nano is Nonsense,” says Caliper Ingredients. CEO Justin Singer and Director of R&D Keith Woelfel host an informative webinar examining our latest pharmacokinetic research, and poking holes in some of the nonsensical nomenclature that dominates the industry.  Watch it here.




  • A sweet partnership begins. Boulder, Colorado’s Rosebud Ice Cream launches its line of handcrafted CBD-infused ice creams, all made with Caliper Ingredients. OG Dreamsicle, Lemon Hazeberry, or Mounty Maple, anyone? Read more about it here.
  • CBD safety confirmed in initial study findings. The research group ValidCare released preliminary findings from a human safety study of hemp-derived CBD products—reporting no evidence of liver disease in the 839 participants and no increase in the prevalence of elevated liver function tests when compared to a population with a similar incidence of medical conditions.


  • Weller CBD sparkling beverages—powered by Caliper Ingredients—are the #1 brand of CBD Sparkling Water in the US, according to SPINS data 2019- 2021 YTD. “Our partnership with Caliper Ingredients was key,” says Weller co-founder Matt Oscamou. 
  • Research-grade cannabis finally gets an upgrade, opening doors to better study data. US Drug Enforcement Admnistration (DEA) announces that it is ending its monopoly on [notoriously bad-quality] cannabis grown for scientific purposes. For scientists that means no longer having to work with schwag, and a big step forward in getting accurate and relevant results using real-world products. 
  • “Enthusiastic Interest for CBD in Food & Beverage Products.” Caliper Ingredients publishes an eye-opening CBD survey in partnership with Food Processing.com. A few highlights: 78% of the industry decision makers polled said CBD should be regulated for use in food & beverages—and nearly half (48%) expected to incorporate CBD into future products, once the FDA provides a regulatory framework. Read it here


  • Champion sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson prevented from participating in the Tokyo Summer Olympics, because of self-reported CBD use. Our CEO had questions.
  • Regulate CBD Now” consumer campaign launched by the US Hemp Roundtable, encouraging citizens to contact their representatives about important legislation impacting consumer access to hemp and CBD products in the United States.


  • Consumer Brands Association publishes a report urging the FDA to regulate CBD, noting the market is ‘Unregulated and Exploding.’ We agree! 
  • The US Senate introduces a possible legal pathway for CBD in dietary supplements. A Discussion Draft of the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act would amend the definition of “dietary supplement” to remove the prohibition on marketing CBD as a dietary supplement. Is this hope we feel?


  • FDA throws a curveball, objecting to 2 applications for 2 “full spectrum hemp extract” CBD products to be sold as Dietary Supplements, putting the ball squarely in Congress’s court. 
  • CBD Pet products soar.  Hemp Industry Daily reports that CBD-infused pet product sales are expected to soar to $40 million-$60 million, representing some of the largest growth seen to date in hemp-CBD categories.
  • The NFL takes the ball on cannabinoid research. The National Football League and its Players Association announced $1 million in grant funding for research into pain management and cannabinoids.
  • The CBD skincare and beauty products market is looking gorgeous. Research firm Technavio predicts the global market of skincare and beauty products with CBD will reach $2.22 billion in growth over the next four years. 


  • Caliper Ingredients hosts its best-attended webinar yet, “Getting Ready for Regulation: How to think about the cannabinoid category in the twilight of FDA purgatory” with CEO Justin Singer. Watch it here
  • Leafreport study finds 52% of CBD-infused coffees & teas didn’t contain the labeled amount of CBD.  And the worst offenders were off from the labeled CBD content by as much as 62% in some cases.
  • More pharmacokinetic insights on cannabinoids published in Pharmaceuticals. Colorado State University researchers, using our THC-infused Ripple products, reported that they are absorbed up to 2 times faster than the market-leading THC product. 




  • National survey finds more seniors are using CBD or marijuana than ever before.  The annual National Survey of Drug Use and Health found that the number of adults 65 or older who reported cannabis use in the previous seven days rose from 5.1 percent in 2019 to 6 percent in 2020. 
  • “Carbonated beverages are bubbling,” big data research company IRI tells the Food Institute. IRI’s analysis found that dollar sales were up across all major categories of carbonated drinks, particularly sparkling water and traditional low-calorie soft drinks. So-called relaxing and “lifting” beverages were also deemed an up-and-coming category worth watching. 
  • Gallup poll: The US isn’t divided when it comes to cannabis legalization. The research group released an annual survey that found 68% of Americans now favor marijuana legalization, the most ever measured. The results are refreshingly bipartisan:  83% of Democrats, 71% of Independents, and 50% of Republicans. 


  • CaliperIngredients.com gets a new look. Our snazzy new website makes it easier than ever to learn about our company and products, read our published research and regulatory insights, watch our webinars and download resources. Check it out!
  • Published research on cannabis reaches its highest level in 2021. Cannabis advocacy organization NORML reported that in the first eleven months of 2021, researchers worldwide published a record 3,800+ scientific papers on the subject of cannabis, based on a keyword search of the National Library of Medicine/PubMed.gov website. That exceeded the total number of papers published in 2020 (3500–which was, at the time, the most ever in a single year). Hooray for science! 
  • The CBD Product Safety and Standardization Act introduced in Congress. U.S. Representatives Kathleen Rice (NY-04), Morgan Griffith (VA-09), Angie Craig (MN-02), and Dan Crenshaw (TX-02) introduced a bipartisan bill that would establish federal standards for CBD food and beverage products to protect consumers and provide marketplace stability for farmers, producers, and retailers. It would allow FDA to regulate CBD as it would any other food ingredient and subject these products to enforceable safeguards to ensure accountability. Could this be even more hope we feel?

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