The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is reminding companies which produce CBD products that if they want to continue to sell their goods in England and Wales from 1 April 2021, they will have to submit novel food applications for validation by 31 March. These will then be subject to an 8-day admin check, followed by the validation process which can take up to 30 days. Once validated, the applications will still be subject to authorisation to ensure that novel foods meet legal standards on safety and content.
Local authorities are responsible for enforcing novel food legislation and they have been advised that only products which were on sale when the FSA announced its deadline last February and are linked to a validated novel foods application, should remain on sale from 1 April 2021.
Applications should be submitted via the Regulated Products system which is jointly operated by the FSA and Food Standards Scotland. Northern Ireland is regulated by EU law so companies there should continue to submit their applications to the European Commission.
How the regulations will be enforced
Local authorities are ultimately responsible for specific decisions regarding the day-to-day enforcement of novel food regulations. At the same time, the FSA, which is the government department responsible for food safety policy in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, provides guidance to ensure consistency in approach across the three countries.
CBD was confirmed as being a novel food product in January 2019. Under the novel food regulations, foods or their ingredients which were not officially consumed before May 1997 must be evaluated and authorised by the food safety regulator (in this case the FSA) before they can enter the market.
The FSA advises that pregnant or breastfeeding women, or anyone on medication should not consume CBD, and that even healthy adults should limit their consumption to a maximum of 70 mg a day (28 drops of 5% CBD) unless otherwise advised by a medical practitioner.
Source: Food Standards Agency