In January 2019, CBD was included in the Novel Food Catalogue. This means authorisation is needed before it can be placed on the European Union market. Recently, however, the Commission decided to pause the authorisation process for CBD because of uncertainty surrounding the possible classification of CBD as an extract of cannabis, which would make it a drug as defined by the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs.
1. Did the Commission, in its deliberations on an authorisation freeze, consider the possibility that the provisions of the Single Convention covering CBD might be outdated and scientifically unfounded, given the ECDD’s more recent 2018 recommendations that cannabis and cannabis resin should be removed from Schedule IV, and cannabis extracts and tinctures from Schedule I? Did it consider the ECDD’s recommendation that products containing predominantly cannabidiol (CBD), and not containing more than 0.2% THC, should be exempted from international control, or Parliament’s February 2019 resolution, which found that CBD is neither toxic nor addictive?
2. Why did the Commission decide to list CBD in the Novel Foods catalogue, and create legal uncertainty by suspending the authorisation process for CBD products, only after several Member States had developed a market for these products, employing tens of thousands of people?
3. What is the scientific data on which the Commission is basing its current classification? Is the Commission going to issue voting recommendations to Member States in connection with the work of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs?
The provinces and territories are responsible for determining how cannabis is distributed and sold within their jurisdictions.
Although it may not have more than 0.3% THC, there is no limit to the amount of CBD that may be contained in industrial hemp plants.
Growing cannabis plants containing CBD for commercial sale
Hemp-seed oil is oil made from pressing the grain of hemp plants. It is processed like other oil seeds, such as canola. In order for hemp-seed oil to be exempt from the Cannabis Act, it can’t contain more than 10 parts per million of THC.
Movement of cannabis and cannabis products between countries is covered by 3 United Nations drug conventions, including the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 as amended by the 1972 Protocol.
The Act and accompanying regulations place strict controls on cannabis: