E.U. Stalls Novel Food Applications

This appears to torpedo EIHA’s multi-million Euro project to obtain Novel Food (NF) status for some members, and highlights the need for a better approach than blind compliance with every whim of every bureaucrat in Brussels. Meanwhile, the UK considers minimally-processed (non-selective) CBD extracts to not be a NF:

CBD extracts can be derived from most parts of hemp / cannabis plants. They are selectively extracted, concentrating CBD and removing or reducing other chemical components. This process means the final product is different from hemp.

Hemp and related products, such as cold-pressed oils, are not novel because there is evidence to show a history of consumption before May 1997. This is not the case for CBD extracts.

It’s not as much what they say, as what they don’t. This is the same situation as in the US with FDA stating CBD in foods may not be added but naturally-occurring Cannabinoids if from hemp are legal, leaving the door wide open for a naturally high-CBD hempseed oil:

10. Is it legal, in interstate commerce, to sell a food (including any animal food or feed) to which THC or CBD has been added?

A. No. Under section 301(ll) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 331(ll)], it is prohibited to introduce or deliver for introduction into interstate commerce any food (including any animal food or feed) to which has been added a substance which is an active ingredient in a drug product that has been approved under section 505 of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 355], or a drug for which substantial clinical investigations have been instituted and for which the existence of such investigations has been made public.

Unlike the US, the trouble in the UK is the marketing of that naturally-high-CBD hempseed oil: you can’t state it contains CBD. But still it could be as high as 6% CBD, 15% if non-approved varieties are used.

From UK cannabinoid industry spots opportunity as EC considers reclassifying CBD a narcotic in Food Navigator magazine:

“The UK could be set to emerge as a global leader in the research and development of CBD as a food ingredient after the news that the European Commission has postponed the Novel Food applications of non-synthetic CBD products as it decides whether to class non-synthetic CBD as a narcotic.

The EC added that if CBD is classified a narcotic it cannot legally be considered a food, and therefore cannot go through the EU Novel Food approval process. As such, hundreds of CBD products would be unable to legally retail on the European market.

The FSA has given UK CBD players assurances that the FSA will be formally accepting Novel Foods applications from January 2021 (when the transition period after Brexit comes to an end) although until that time, the EC remains the route for formal submissions. In addition, the FSA’s view is that, in line with national government policy, CBD extracts themselves are not considered narcotics (although THC, the psychoactive component of the hemp plant, is).” […]

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