CBD FOOD: the new frontier of flavour is cannabidiol. A fundamental ingredient of cannabis-based products, even if its content in the European Union has not yet been precisely regulated.

It would be “novel food”: a set of “new” substances, foods or ingredients, never used before for the preparation of food or drinks, and together with cannabis, there are products that some of us have learned to taste or taste already for some time: chia seeds, baobabs, spirulina algae.

European legislation, the Novel Food Regulation, seeks to establish thresholds and parameters that this type of food must comply with before being placed on the market (and in food) to a significant extent. The threshold is established by EFSA, the European Food Safety Authority.

The product (it should also apply to cannabis, or more precisely to CBD, but CBD has not yet been included in the list) must not be toxic, must appear regularly on the label and must not be disadvantageous from a nutritional point of view (that is, its nutritional value must be good).

CBD drink, CBD gummies bear, CBD chocolate, CBD candy for the throat: here are just some of the products that you can find and which are based on light cannabis, all containing cannabidiol (CBD) which is a non-psychoactive ingredient, and which gives a lot has come to the attention of important scientific studies for its beneficial, relaxing, calming, sedative properties, against anxiety and depression and many other ailments.

In Italy, we can currently find it as an oil or in cosmetic products, but no real EU law regulates the use of CBD FOOD.

Both at the European Union and on the Italian level, while limits and thresholds are established with regard to the level of THC, when it comes to talking about CBD things are different.

The regulation of CBD FOOD, although CBD is a safe and very well tolerated product, must be carefully regulated, for one principle, if nothing else, of consumer protection: that if you want to buy CBD drinks or throat candies at CBD must be confident that he is buying food that will not bring him any kind of disadvantage or unpleasant experience.

CBD FOOD: CHOCOLATE

Let’s think of a delicious food like chocolate, eternally present on the tables of gourmands in all possible forms: if we think of the CBD – chocolate mixture, aficionados and lovers of light marijuana can only make their mouth water!

Foods containing CBD and chocolate mixed together are a reality, but a reality that in our country, under the test of facts, is very difficult to regulate. CBD for food use becomes a real dark forest prey to a dense web of laws and regulations, because as we have mentioned, CBD is not part of the “novel food” and therefore in Italy, at least for the moment, the sale of food containing CBD is illegal.

The cannabidiol market is undoubtedly fascinating, both because it is thriving and because of all the scientific studies that prove the almost pharmaceutical effectiveness of products containing CBD.

Many Italian companies have shown great interest in the extractions of CBD, and in its use in particular in food: it is in fact known that the way we eat is an important way to stay healthy, therefore it is not surprising that many of these realities are interested in a more precise and punctual regulation of products containing cannabidiol in the food sector.

In America, the Food and Drug Administration has declared that it is illegal to sell food products that contain CBD since it is extracted from the buds, which also contain the psychoactive component of cannabis (THC) in different percentages.

The EU has decreed that it is up to individual member states, in the absence of common legislation, to issue more stringent laws and regulations for regulating the levels of cannabidiol contained in foods. The CBD limit in Italy has therefore not yet been set, but it could soon be, also because the EFSA spokesperson, Maria Tejero, has received a request to include CBD as a novel food and dietary supplement.

The European Association of Industrial Hemp (EIHA) has proposed to classify CBD as an ingredient or food supplement, divided into three categories depending on the concentration of the active ingredient: if it is pure CBD or high in CBD, it should be sold in the pharmacy; the medium concentration (20 – 200 mg) may work well as a non-prescription medicine or dietary supplement. Finally, a minimum CBD content (less than 20 mg per day) could finally be added to food without any restrictions. We recall that the studies and research on CBD, although encouraging and positive, are all relatively recent, and this is the reason for the obligation and caution used in “handling” this component.

CBD FOOD: THE REGULATION IN 2020

Foods made from legal hemp are full of essential proteins and amino acids. No wonder, therefore, that you want to include it among the food additives that are safe and can be used safely, and legally, in the FOOD industry.

However, there is still no registered drug based on pure CBD, and in pharmacies, the use of CBD in galenic preparations is only allowed upon presentation of a medical prescription.

The legislation in 2020 regarding CBD remains the same as before (i.e., no legislation): in March 2020 in Germany, there was a rumour of an agreement between the federal government and the EIHA, regarding the use of CBD in food Germany; but essentially nothing has really changed.

CBD continues not to be usable (legally) as a food additive, and the battle in this regard still seems long and victory is to come.

Everything obtained from the inflorescence cannot be used in food; in Italy, unlike in other countries, CBD has not yet been classified as a novel food and therefore cannot be used in the food industry. The extraction of CBD from the inflorescences raises doubts: in some cases, traces of THC have been found in pure CBD oil, therefore a narcotic substance, illegal in our country at certain concentrations.

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