The Cannabis Trades Association (CTA) is launching a lobbying campaign on the Foods Standards Agency (FSA) to prevent it from taking action against CBD products.

While the FSA has confirmed there are no plans to remove products containing cannabidiol oil, which is derived from cannabis, from sale, it believes CBD meets the criteria of a ‘novel food’ product, putting it at risk of future removal. Novel foods are foods that have not been widely consumed by people in the EU before May 1997, and include products such as chia seeds.

 According to chairman of the Cannabis Trades Association Mike Harlington, enforcing the provisions of novel foods on the CBD market would be a “draconian move and a devastating blow for millions of customers”.

What is CBD? Everything retailers need to know

“The concern is that applying the same categorisation to very pure, high-quality CBD products and to cheap, misleading imports, particularly from the US, risks confusing the category even more for consumers,” he told Vape Retailer.

“Some of the imports claiming to contain CBD have been appalling. We’ve seen ones that are mainly just sugar and contain very little, or no CBD at all.”

The CTA’s campaign will include engaging with politicians and the media to raise the issue, with an emphasis on providing education for retailers.

“Retailers have been subject to low-quality CBD products for so long, but we believe many stores genuinely do not understand if they are selling high-grade CBD products or not. There are massive issues with maintaining standards in the short fill market in general,” Harlington said.