A batch of applications for CBD products submitted by a UK trade group has been advanced by food safety authorities.
The Association for the Cannabinoid Industry (ACI), which formed a consortium to represent its members in the approval process, said validation of the applications under two joint dossiers submitted to the Food Standards Agency (FSA) could play a factor in the approval of as many as 4,000 products under 320 brands.
“Validation” is the second step in the FSA’s three-step process for approving new (or “novel”) foods.
“Every consortium member’s applications ride on the back of those, so the success of those two (dossiers) is crucial to every other validation,” Tom Risby, ACI’s business R&D manager, told NutritionInsight.
Risby said the products could be moved to the “validated” column on the FSA’s register of CBD products “in the coming days.”
As of today, products in the two ACI dossiers remain in the FSA’s “awaiting evidence” category on the agency’s public list – the first phase of the approval process. The applications cover 29 isolate and distillate products from seven companies: GenCanna (4); Embody Brands, LLC (6); Global Resource Operations, LLC (8); Janus Organics/Taylor Mammon Ltd (1); Jersey Hemp Ltd (5); Naturecan UK (4); and Standard Hemp (1).
To get onto the public list – and therefore remain on the market pending FSA’s final approval – products already in distribution had to have been on sale before Feb. 13, 2020. Those introduced to the market after that date were not eligible for the agency’s consideration.
The FSA is in the process of sorting out applications for roughly 12,000 individual products as it works to clarify a flourishing gray market that has seen retail outlets flooded with CBD products over the past several years. ACI has estimated the domestic CBD market at roughly £690 million ($830 million/€785 million).
FSA said it expects the first CBD products to be fully authorized during the latter half of 2023 if the evidence necessary for safety assessments is complete. The authorization process can take more time if additional studies are required, according to the agency.