European Commission Decides CBD Is Not A Drug Opening Up Novel Food Pathway
The European Commission has unexpectedly concluded that CBD should not be considered as a drug opening up the path to a regulated EU market for the cannabinoid as a novel food.
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Italy reclassifies natural CBD as a narcotic drug. The decision may see challenges from companies marketing in Italy natural CBD supplements registered in other European countries, given that the European Court of Justice (CJEU) overturned a similar position taken by France in 2020.
France's Ministry of Solidarity and Health published a decree allowing the commercial sale of cannabis sativa extracts with a maximum THC content up to 0.3%, but banning the sale of raw cannabis flowers and leaves to consumers in all their forms, thus elimating a booming CBD market for tea, for example. The ban, however, has been halted by France's highest administrative court on the basis that it is disproportionate. While the Conseil d’Etat makes its final decision, French bricks-and-mortar and online CBD retailers can continue selling low-THC cannabis flowers and leaves.
A WHO recommendation to explicitly exempt low-THC CBD from international narcotics controls has been emphatically rejected by UN member states. The CBD industry had hoped for a positive outcome to remove regulatory pressure on product manufacturers in Europe and around the world.