Will Brexit Unlock the British Cannabis Market?

26th December 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Brexit negotiators finally announced on Christmas Eve that a deal had been struck with the EU just days before the end of the Brexit transition period. While the details may have been decided, it is still unclear how the UK will look and operate once it leaves the EU bloc. However, cannabis businesses are predicted by many to be some of the few early-stage winners in the upcoming era. 

In a recently published white paper, experts at the Fieldfisher law firm emphasise the potential that Brexit could bring about for the UK cannabis industry.

While the UK remains in the EU, the country’s laws as to the regulation and marketing of are tied to those of the bloc. These laws are currently relatively vague, however, the UK may be able to take a more simple and beneficial approach to cannabis following the exit.

In the report, “it is claimed that there is a real lack of unity among EU countries, making it extremely frustrating for businesses in this space to work seamlessly across Europe.”

In the UK, it is thought that the cannabis market could already be worth hundreds of millions of pounds. Yet, many speculate the the value of the industry could increase significantly should more favourable laws be implemented.

As the industry is booming and cannabis businesses are growing, in a post-Brexit Britain the UK will have every opportunity to be one of the global leaders – of course, depending on implementing the appropriate regulations.

Regulators have a whole lot of work to do before the UK could profit from the country’s potentially booming cannabis industry.

First of all, when the UK leaves the EU, it could move away from the Novel Foods classification and other regulations regarding cannabis. But what does this mean?

In short, while the UK’s Food Standards Agency (FSA) “has stood by this legislation and stated that all products need to be approved, the Novel Foods catalogue perhaps lacks gravitas as it has only been loosely enforced in the UK.”

Also, while the UK’s economy is forecasted to struggle over the next few years due to Brexit and the impact coronavirus has had, cannabis might be an attractive stock for businesses looking to invest.

As the Brexit negotiations between the UK and the EU are far from over, the industry doesn’t really know what to expect from 1 January.

However, it is clear that with being able to regulate its cannabis market, the UK has a massive opportunity to unlock its potential and provide millions of cannabis users and patients valuable products.

For more information about the UK’s and the EU’s cannabis industry, read the report here.

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