Last month, we reported that there was a run on CBD drinks and other CBD products in the UK after the EU declared that CBD and other cannabis or hemp extracts were novel foods that could only be allowed on the market after receiving regulatory approval. Cannabis industry players in the UK aren’t taking that ban lying down. Their association has instructed a team of lawyers to head to Brussels in order to try and overturn that ruling.
While the EU law, (EU) 2015/2283, isn’t binding on the member states, many countries use the guidance provided by the EU to draft their own domestic laws and regulations. Actually, many EU countries promptly act on those recommendations then ask questions later.
For example, Austria immediately banned CBD and all food products containing it as soon as the EU made its ruling on the products.
Cannabinoids were categorized as novel foods by the EU since industry players “failed to prove” that those products had a history of being consumed in the EU prior to 1997 when the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) was established.
Mackrell Turner Garrett, a London-based law firm, together with a leading trading standards and food attorney in the UK, have been sent to Brussels to meet EFSA officials in order to argue the case of the CBD industry in the UK.
The lawyers are acting on behalf of the Cannabis Trade Association UK and they will try to convince EFSA at the EU headquarters that since hempseed and hempseed extracts have already been approved, then they don’t belong in the category of the novel foods that should be banned.
This will be a tough fight to complete because the EU has a history of being cautious regarding any major global developments with origins in North America. This pushback has particularly been strong ever since the financial meltdown of 2008.
But the team from London is unfazed and wants to argue the case of its members. CBD has grown so rapidly that in just three years, the CTA (Cannabis Trade Association) has grown to more than 700 members.
Additionally, the CBD industry contributes approximately $130 million to the British economy each year. It remains to be seen whether the arguments presented by the lawyers will change the minds of the regulators in Brussels. Medical Cannabis Payment Solutions (OTC: REFG), MustGrow Biologics Corp. and other people who see investment opportunities hope that Brussels changes its stand so that the growth of the industry isn’t torpedoed at this point.
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