FSA blunts UK cannabis oil market with new regulations – City A.M.


All UK food products containing cannabis extract cannabidiol (CBD) will be taken off the shelves from 31 March next year if they have not been submitted for approval to the Food Standards Agency (FSA) by that date.

Local authorities will be responsible for enforcing the new legislation on such products, the sales volume of which has risen swiftly since coming onto the market.

Read more: Deep in the weeds: How to solve the legal problem of investing in cannabis

Until 31 March, they have been told that businesses should be able to sell their existing CBD products during this time provided they are not incorrectly labelled or are not unsafe to eat.

No products on the market in the UK have currently completed the novel foods authorisation process, although some businesses have started it).

The FSA only began regulating the CBD market last January. It said that it had been forced to impose the deadline as producers had been slow to submit products for approval.

Emily Miles, chief executive of the FSA, said: “CBD products are widely available on the high street but are not properly authorised. The CBD industry must provide more information about the safety and contents of these products to the regulator before 31 March 2021, or the products will be taken off the shelves.

“Also today, we are advising that CBD could be risky for vulnerable groups, and suggesting an upper limit of 70mg a day for everyone else taking the product. 
“The actions that we’re taking today are a pragmatic and proportionate step in balancing the protection of public health with consumer choice”.

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Professor Alan Boobis, chair of the government’s committee on toxicity, said: “My committee has reviewed the evidence on CBD food products and found evidence there are potential adverse health effects from the consumption of these products. We are particularly concerned about pregnant or breast-feeding women and people on medication. 

“We don’t know enough to be sure about such a risk but I am pleased with the sensible and pragmatic approach the FSA is taking. The committee will continue to keep these products under review in the months ahead.”

Katie Vickery, head of food law at Osborne Clarke LLP, said that announcement provided “much need clarity for businesses and consumers”:

Read more: The cannabis conundrum risks causing investors to be accused of money laundering

“The industry was thrown into turmoil when CBD was categorised by the European Commission last year as a novel food, meaning that the plethora of products available on the UK market cannot legally be sold until CBD has been approved through the novel food authorisation process. 

“The Food Standards Agency has been slow to provide clarification on whether enforcement action would be taken against those businesses that currently sell food containing CBD and CBD food supplements”.

This article originally appeared here in https://www.cityam.com/fsa-blunts-uk-cannabis-oil-market-with-new-regulations/

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