CBD Novel Food Applications in UK Move to Next Assessment Level

CBD Novel Food Applications in UK Move to Next Assessment Level

The United Kingdom’s (UK) Food Standards Agency (FSA) has approved the ACI’s (Association for the Cannabinoid Industry) applications for CBD isolate to move forward, saying they are within the scope of authorization as novel foods. This means the risk assessment stage is the next step. Once the assessment process is completed, CBD distillate and isolate will each become an ingredient that could be used in foods and supplements.

Once approved, the food and supplement markets are expected to expand once CBD has full legal status as a novel food ingredient. Tom Risby, business R&D manager at ACI, explained, “In the future, we imagine that rather than being a product, CBD will become an ingredient, similar to Omega-3.

We expect to see CBD being integrated into bread, cereal, ice cream and other common foodstuffs to create a whole new functional food market. Integrating cannabinoids into products that consumers regularly use will broaden the scope of the market, engaging consumers who would never buy a specific CBD product but instead are looking for alternatives to their daily routine that can offer some small health benefits.”

The process for approving CBD as a novel food is comprehensive. The two applications ACI submitted directly relate to about 20 products and contain toxicological reports and bioavailability data. If these two applications get final approval, there is the potential for 4000 products to be listed as validated by the FSA eventually. This means the market for food and supplements containing CBD will rapidly grow. Risby believes that the assessment and approval process in the UK could provide an example for other regulatory bodies and companies in different countries still struggling to establish a clear pathway for cannabis products, like in the U.S.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has been very slow in addressing the safety of CBD despite its huge popularity. The agency rejected three petitions filed by the Consumer Healthcare Products Association that asked for certain CBD products to be labeled as supplements. It was discouraging because the FDA had no plans to assess CBD then, leaving the market in turmoil.

Only recently, in January 2023, the FDA announced it was pursuing a regulatory path but would have to work with Congress to develop a strategy. In the meantime, the states are passing their laws and establishing regulations, leaving the CBD market in turmoil.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *