We’re asking for your help in protecting safe and legal access to hemp and cannabidiol (CBD) to everyone in Europe.
Thousands of people of all ages have come to rely on the natural wellness properties of hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD). Unfortunately, due to a surprising preliminary conclusion from the European Commission, the future of hemp and CBD in Europe could be in jeopardy.
That’s why, whether you’re a Kannaway Brand Ambassador, customer, or simply a CBD enthusiast, it is important for us all to join together in this crucial moment and put in the effort necessary to support access to hemp and CBD across Europe.
Keep reading to learn more about why the future of hemp-derived CBD may be at risk, and what direct actions you can take to advocate for hemp and CBD.
An Unfair “Preliminary View”
While nothing yet has formally changed, recent developments at the European Commission could suggest major changes ahead for the accessibility of hemp and CBD across the continent, and perhaps even internationally.
In July, the European Commission surprised the hemp and CBD industry by issuing a “preliminary conclusion” that CBD, as well as all natural hemp extracts made from the flowering and fruiting tops of the hemp plant, should be considered a narcotic drug under the United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961.
Hemp, which has been used as a food source for centuries, has never been listed within the United Nations schedules. It is, however, addressed and clearly exempted from the scope of international drug controls in the Single Convention of 1961. As long as the plant’s parts are used for non-psychoactive products and not medicines, they are not covered by drug provisions of the Single Convention.
The European Commission’s position appears to be a political one meant to favor big pharmaceutical companies over small businesses within the natural hemp space. While concluding that natural hemp CBD should be considered a drug, the commission acknowledges synthetic cannabinoids, including synthetic CBD, as exempt. A logical conclusion is that the European Commission favors the production of a synthetic version, which can be mass produced by large corporates.
For consumers, whether hemp’s extracts are formally considered a narcotic drug or food would impact availability. Any tightening in EU or international policy regarding CBD has the potential to limit access to the benefits of CBD. In short, if the European Commission’s “preliminary view” were to become formally adopted, all of hemp’s extracts, including CBD, would no longer be considered food and could even be banned.
Kannaway: The Law Remains Unchanged
It’s important to understand that the European Commission’s decision so far is a “preliminary conclusion” and no laws or policies around hemp or CBD have been formally adopted. The commission’s issued conclusion does not mean that CBD and hemp extracts are now classified as drugs.
Although worrisome, the European Commission’s preliminary decision has no direct impact on Europe’s hemp industry. Hemp farmers, natural hemp- and CBD-based product manufacturers, industrial hemp businesses, and the hemp and CBD scientific community can continue to operate as before.
Non-psychoactive and crafted using the industry’s leading quality and safety standards, Kannaway hemp and CBD products remain legal, safe, and accessible. We’ve led the CBD industry in Europe since 2018 and will continue to deliver the high-quality hemp CBD products you’ve come to rely on.
“Our portfolio of Companies has worked with government leaders around the world to make sure that people have legal access to CBD and we will do the same in Europe,” said Kannaway CEO Blake Schroeder.
Kannaway Supports EIHA
Kannaway is proud to support the European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA) and its recent opinion letter to the European Commission, strongly opposing its preliminary view on the legal status of CBD and hemp. We agree with the EIHA’s position that the European Commission’s decision is “not based on the latest scientific literature nor inspired by the current debate at the United Nations level.”
Like EIHA, Kannaway holds the position that hemp and its downstream products are not narcotic or psychoactive drugs and that the plant is exempted from the scope of international drug controls in the Single Convention of 1961. We recognize that hemp and its extracts have been consumed for centuries in the EU and worldwide for health maintaining and supporting wellness and that they should remain accessible.
“Hemp has been a food source for centuries and for decades the EU has stated that hemp extracts are not novel. It seems like a political move to now attempt to change its legal status,” said Kannaway Managing Director of International Janne Heimonen. “We are fully committed to helping the industry keep providing consumers the products they need.”
Fight for Hemp - How can YOU help?
There is strength in numbers, especially when trying to enact change. If like us, you think hemp and CBD should remain legal and safe, and not be considered a narcotic drug, please join the effort in protecting the accessibility of hemp and CBD! Here are ways you can help:
1. Sign the online petition launched by the EIHA in partnership with Hemp for Humanity. By adding your name, you’ll be urging the European Commission to reverse its preliminary decision on hemp and CBD. After you’ve signed the petition yourself, please share it on social media and directly with your friends, family, and CBD supporters in your network.
2. Write to your MEPs to demonstrate your support for hemp and CBD. Your MEPs represent your interests in the European Parliament, so it’s important to urge them to act on behalf of the natural hemp and CBD industry. To make it easy, the EIHA has provided a convenient letter that you can download and send to your local MEPs.
3. Stay informed on the issue so that you can effectively communicate the reasons why hemp and CBD should not be classified as a narcotic. The more we know about CBD, the more effectively we can spread the word of how it is non-psychoactive and can improve the overall health of people around the world. Read more about the European Commission’s “preliminary conclusion” through Hemp for Humanity. The Kannaway News Feed and the EIHA website are also great resources for learning about CBD and Europe’s hemp industry.
This is a crucial time for our hemp and CBD industry, and we appreciate your willingness to help make sure hemp and CBD remains available to everyone! Your efforts are helping to fight for a better future, where hemp- and CBD-products are accessible for all.
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