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Novel food: EU continues testing of CBD products

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A hemp plant with hemp seeds and a little bottle
The use of CBD in food products such as chocolate is a trend. However, it has not yet been decided whether these foods may also be sold as such. © Pixabay / CBD-Infos-Com

Following a ruling by the European Court of Justice, the EU wants to clarify once again whether products containing the hemp plant active ingredient cannabidiol qualify as novel foods.

The European Commission has resumed its review of applications for approval of products containing the active ingredient cannabidiol (CBD) as novel foods. The decisive factor was a ruling by the European Court of Justice on November 19, according to which the active ingredient cannabidiol extracted from the hemp plant is not to be classified as an addictive substance. Products containing CBD could therefore pass as food, provided they do not have a medicinal effect.

In order for CBD products to be marketed as food, an EU-wide approval as novel food is necessary. According to a statement by the German Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL), the European Commission currently has more than 50 applications, the review of which has not yet been completed.

"Even though it is being read in some places that CBD products could now be legally sold as food, this is not true in our estimation. We await the outcome of the European Commission's review," says BVL President Friedel Cramer. "Such statements are simply much ado about nothing."

Until the review is completed, it remains to be seen whether products containing CBD will be classified as food or as medicinal products in the future. According to BVL information, the respective amount of cannabidiol would also be taken into account.


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