HomeConsum-actorsCBD, the Food Standards Agency updates British consumers

CBD, the Food Standards Agency updates British consumers

On 31.3.22 the Food Standards Agency (FSA) - the independent food safety risk assessment and reporting authority in England and Wales - has updated consumers and stakeholders regarding CBD (cannabidiol). (1)

The FSA has also published a list of 3.536 foods and dietary supplements based on CBD or in any case containing it, the sale of which is temporarily permitted. To confirm a pragmatic and realistic approach, in the interest of all.

CBD, premise

CBD is the most famous of cannabinoids, a category of phytocompounds found in hemp. Neither CBD nor other cannabinoids (eg. CBG) present in the Cannabis Sativa L. they have psychotropic properties, apart from THC, the presence of which must be contained within 0,2% so that the plant is not qualified as narcotic. (2) On these premises, the European Commission has recently established the THC thresholds allowed in various food categories. (3)

Cannabidiol (CBD) is also considered to be a novel foods - in the absence of evidence regarding its food consumption in the EU before 15.5.1997 - and despite the numerous dossier submitted so far have not yet obtained the relevant authorization (4,5). The EU Court of Justice has also ruled the illegality of national prohibitions on the marketing of CBD for different uses, with judgment of 19.11.20 which has already been followed up in France and Germany (6,7),

CBD and novel food in England

After Brexit England continued to apply much of the EU rules in the area of food law, including those on novel food. However, granting a transitional period to CBD foods and dietary supplements placed on the UK market before 13.2.20.

Such products can be kept on the market, provided that:

- operators have submitted applications for authorization as novel food by 31.3.21,

- the products are safe and labeled correctly, as indeed the rest of the foods, and do not exceed the permitted THC thresholds. (8)

CBD, list of products temporarily allowed in England and Wales

The extracts of CBD are currently available in the UK both in food supplements and in commonly used foods. Oils, drops or tinctures, gelatin capsules, beverages, confectionery, confectionery and baked goods. And the Food Standards Agency published a list of 3.536 products, whose applications for authorization such as novel foods in England and Wales have already passed or are awaiting the preliminary screening of the FSA. (9)

The 3.536 products of this list are not 'formally authorized'to the sale which is however admitted - in the transitional regime referred to in the previous paragraph - pending their authorization as novel foods. Inclusion on the list does not guarantee that they will be authorized. On the other hand, products not present in the list cannot benefit from the transitional period and their sale will be allowed only following authorization as new food.

Food Standards Agency, advice to vulnerable groups of consumers

La Food Standards Agency in any case, on the basis of the information collected so far, it advises consumers'to think carefully before taking any CBD products'.

As a precaution Food Standards Agency 'does not recommend'(nor prohibits) the use of CBD, beyond the cases of indications or supervision of doctors or health professionals, to'vulnerable groups'. Such as for example:

- pregnant and lactating women,

- 'people taking any medication. If you have any health concerns, please contact a health professional'.

Advice for healthy adults

'Some studies Scientific studies suggest that CBD may have effects on the liver when taken in high doses, but there have been very few studies on the levels found in foods. As a precaution, we recommend that healthy adults [70 kg in weight] do not take more than 70 mg per day, unless a doctor agrees. This is about 28 drops of 5% CBD'. (Food Standards Agency.

It will be useful above all, sharing methods of analysis suitable for combating fraud on synthetic CBD sold as natural or in any case of a quality well below that promised. (10) In addition to the legal certainty which in Italy is still poor, despite the fact that the EU rules are very clear ..

Dario Dongo


(1) Consumer advice on cannabidiol (CBD) extracts. Food Standards Agency. 31.3.22, https://www.food.gov.uk/safety-hygiene/cannabidiol-cbd

(2) Dario Dongo, Silvia Giordanengo. Cannabis Sativa, CBD. Green light from the UN and the European Commission. GIFTS (Great Italian Food Trade). 7.12.20/XNUMX/XNUMX, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/progresso/cannabis-sativa-cbd-via-libera-da-onu-e-commissione-europea

(3) Julia Tower. Hemp in food, the EU adopts maximum limits for THC. GIFTS (Great Italian Food Trade). 15.3.22/XNUMX/XNUMX, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/mercati/canapa-negli-alimenti-l-ue-adotta-i-limiti-massimi-di-thc

(4) Dario Dongo. CBD, the novel food dossiers being examined by EFSA. GIFTS (Great Italian Food Trade). 15.9.21/XNUMX/XNUMX, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/mercati/cbd-i-dossier-novel-food-all-esame-di-efsa

(5) An update on applications for authorization a novel foods so far presented pursuant to reg. UE 2015/2283 is available on the European Commission website. V. https://ec.europa.eu/food/safety/novel-food/authorisations/summary-applications-and-notifications_en

(6) European Court of Justice (ECJ), case C ‑ 663/18. V. Dario Dongo. Natural CBD, the EU Court of Justice declares unjustified prohibitions illegitimate. New horizons. GIFTS (Great Italian Food Trade). 21.11.20, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/progresso/cbd-naturale-la-corte-di-giustizia-ue-dichiara-illegittimi-i-divieti-ingiustificati-nuovi-orizzonti

(7) Dario Dongo. Green light to the CBD, justice to the Court of Düsseldorf. GIFTS (Great Italian Food Trade). 30.5.21/XNUMX/XNUMX, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/progresso/via-libera-al-cbd-giustizia-al-tribunale-di-düsseldorf

(8) Novel Food Authorization of CBD in the UK? The lawyer Dario Dongo answers. DO (Food and Agriculture Requirements). 31.7.21/XNUMX/XNUMX, https://www.foodagriculturerequirements.com/archivio-notizie/domande-e-risposte/autorizzazione-novel-food-del-cbd-in-uk-risponde-l-avvocato-dario-dongo

(9) Food Standards Agency (FSA). CBD products linked to novel food applications. 31.3.22, https://data.food.gov.uk/cbd-products/products-list

(10) Dario Dongo. CBD, research development for an effective analysis protocol. GIFTS (Great Italian Food Trade). 27.12.21/XNUMX/XNUMX, https://www.greatitalianfoodtrade.it/innovazione/cbd-sviluppo-della-ricerca-per-un-efficace-protocollo-di-analisi

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