Canadian retailers struggle to keep popular cannabis extract CBD on shelves

Retailers across Canada are struggling with a shortage of all cannabis, but there's one product type they're especially desperate to keep on shelves: CBD.

CBD is a non-intoxicating extract that has been promoted as a natural cure for pain, anxiety and insomnia, despite limited medical research.

Krystian Wetulani, owner of two City Cannabis stores in Vancouver, says licensed producers didn't anticipate how popular it would be.

He says when a CBD product becomes available on BC's cannabis wholesale ordering system, every store owner races to try to grab everything available.

Biome Grow CEO Khurram Malik says the buzz around CBD grew late last year with the passage of a US law that allowed hemp growth for the purpose of making the extract.

It's so trendy that Kim Kardashian West recently posted on Instagram about her ``CBD baby shower,'' where she invited guests to make CBD-infused salt scrubs and body oil.

BC's Liquor Distribution Branch says licensed producers are ramping up production and it expects CBD supply to increase in the second half of 2019.

Meanwhile, scientists are working to separate the hype from reality when it comes to medical claims about the drug.