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CBD and hemp startups are using creative loopholes to skirt Facebook’s ad ban. Here’s how they’re doing it.

When former journalist James Higdon founded Cornbread Hemp, a Kentucky-based CBD producer, he knew that getting in front of customers was crucial. That can be a challenge for any startup, but companies selling cannabis-related products have to be especially creative when it comes to advertising. Facebook doesn’t allow the paid promotion of hemp and CBD…

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CBD and hemp startups are using creative loopholes to skirt Facebook’s ad ban. Here’s how they’re doing it.

Jeremy Berke

When former journalist James Higdon founded Cornbread Hemp, a Kentucky-based CBD producer, he knew that getting in front of customers was crucial. That can be a challenge for any startup, but companies selling cannabis-related products have to be especially creative when it comes to advertising.

Facebook doesn’t allow the paid promotion of hemp and CBD products, creating an effective ad ban. Sellers have found creative ways to avoid having their Facebook ads pulled, but the process can be costly and time consuming, making it hard for small players to compete with big cannabis companies.

Three hemp and CBD startups discussed those loopholes in detail with Business Insider, likening advertising on the world’s largest social media network to a cat-and-mouse game, with the companies trying to outsmart algorithms and human reviewers.

CBD and hemp remain a gray area in terms of federal regulation, and the Facebook ad ban underlines the complications this uncertainty has caused for companies. The FDA is currently working to develop firmer rules around the industry.

“Right now we allow people to post about CBD on Facebook, but we still prohibit the promotion of CBD in advertisements. We continue to review our policies over time so we can better

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