16th February 2021
By Emily Ledger
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The Association for the Cannabinoids Industry (ACI) have announced the submission of their Novel Foods application on behalf of the members of its CBD Safety Study Consortium. The Novel Foods application deadline (March 31) could see a large number of CBD products removed from the market.

This announcement by the ACI marks a significant milestone for members of the CBD Safety Study Consortium who have been working to reach the deadline. CBD companies must have their applications validated by the UK’s Food Safety Agency (FSA) by March 31 or their products can be removed from the UK market.

Dr Parveen Bhatarah, Regulatory and Compliance Associate at the ACI, said in a statement: I am delighted to submit these dossiers on behalf of the ACI-ADSL CBD safety consortium and support an industry on the cusp of transitioning from a grey area to a fully legally compliant market.

“Well done to our consortium members who have delivered on the substantial data requirements that were asked of them. We’re very pleased to lead the way to a sustainable cannabinoid industry.”

The European Food Standards Agency revealed the novel foods classification of CBD in February 2019. The March 31 deadline for novel foods application approval was announced in February 2020.

Up until now, there have remained some unanswered questions regarding the safety of CBD for human consumption – including concerns raised by the government’s Committee on Toxicology (CoT). The EFSA’s novel food classification means that safety studies will be required for CBD products to ensure their safety for human consumption.

In September 2020, the ACI partnered with the Advanced Development and Safety Laboratory (ADSL) to announce the launch of a landmark study – a consortium of CBD companies committed to building a fully compliant UK industry.

Mark Bowes-Cavanagh, CEO of the ADSL, said: “ADSL have been proud to support the ACI and its committed members in a ground-breaking submission.”

“It is a very exciting sector who are committed to ensuring that their products are not only safe but also legally compliant and I look forward to the growth and awareness these applications will deliver to the consumer.”

The study was designed to assist members in getting validated novel foods application. This involved addressing the existing gaps in data identified by the CoT.

In addition, the study generates safety information mandated by FSA’s novel foods application process. This submission represents months of work from the ACI and its members – a number of CBD companies who have chosen to collaborate in order to share costs and data.

Data that is generated through this process will be useful to meet demands from the USA and EU regulatory authorities. This will help to further support the industry globally, and makes the UK a global leader in cannabinoid regulation.

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