European Commission Reclassifies Cannabidiol (CBD) as a Novel Food
February 9, 2019
First discovered in 1940, cannabidiol (CBD) is one of over a hundred different cannabinoids found in cannabis plants. The extracts have long been used in health and wellness supplements, but new regulations by the European Commission could change the way these products are supplied. Are you aware of what this might mean for your company?
The therapeutic benefits of CBD make it a popular natural remedy, and one which many consumers get tremendous relief from. Medical conditions currently being successfully treated with CBD products include chronic pain, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, anxiety, and depression.
The European Commission will make a final decision on March 2019, on reclassifying food products and supplements containing cannabidiol (CBD) extracts as ‘novel food’. In short, this means that the food products are not documented as being consumed by humans before 1997, and therefore need further safety assessment before they can be legally sold in the EU.
This decision could make it more difficult for businesses to sell products made with the extract, and consumers too will likely have trouble purchasing their much-loved products and supplements. The situation isn’t entirely clear cut, though. Evidence was later presented to the commission detailing the use of CBD in food products used far before the cut off date of 1997. This has led to some confusion over the status of CBD products, with a final vote on the decision due to take place in the near future.
Zion Payments has a particular focus on businesses in the health, beauty and wellness industries, partnering with over 40 different companies selling CBD. We recognise the difficulty current uncertainty is having on this sector, and understand the important role that cannabidiol (CBD) extracts play in the space.
Advice on current regulations can be difficult to navigate, with so many different laws, opinions and bodies all competing with one another. But we’re here to dispel the myths and make life a little easier.
In light of the latest changes, the UK government is advising businesses to apply for safety assessments and authorisation of their products under the Novel Foods Regulations. In addition, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) is working closely with the industry to develop guidance for enforcement officers on a proportionate response in relation to products already on the market.
Now being treated as a food supplement rather than a medicinal product, CBD products require further licensing, and selling them in the UK might prove far trickier than it once was. If you’d like to learn more about selling CBD products in partnership with Zion Payments, don’t hesitate to contact our team. We’ve been working alongside businesses in the health and wellness industry for many years, and can guide you through the latest regulations that apply to businesses operating in this industry. Get in touch to find out more.