The Medical Cannabiz summit took place over the past weekend (3rd-6th November 2019) at the Intercontinental Hotel, Malta. Our Head of Technical & Development attended the summit and was part of “The Future of CBD in Europe” panel alongside other key industry players.
The summit kicked off on the Tuesday morning with an interesting insight into the Maltese Vision and how the small island is intent on taking the medical cannabis industry head on and more importantly, making a success of the industry. Hon. Chris Cardona, Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Businesses Malta stated that “it is our duty to make this accessible to public and only right that we make access to these products, easier, safer and cheaper”, an opinion welcomed by the audience. Further members of the Maltese Parliament were welcomed on stage, including Dr Miriam Dalli who put Malta at the forefront of European progress in the field of medical cannabis.
A fascinating set of opening speeches, led on nicely to the Future of CBD in Europe panel, where myself and four other like-minded industry members, led by Richard Sharp (Co-Founder of Cobidol, a platform for the CBD industry) explored the current state of the regulations on how we as an industry can push to ensure longevity and consumer trust.
The message was clear, currently an industry that is worth £300 million alone in the UK, with no set regulations, is causing uproar. Novel Foods was the topic on everyone’s mind, and it was widely agreed that despite the unclear direction surrounding the regulation, CBD and hemp extracted products should go through the application process.
Interestingly, the market was referred to on more than one occasion, as in a similar situation to the E Liquid market, pre-TPD – where retailers had the freedom to produce, label and market products however they wished to, with no enforcing body to stop them. The similarities are apparent and without direction from those that know the industry the best, the manufacturers/retailers, the CBD industry could go the same way as the E Liquid industry and be regulated by the government under an irrelevant umbrella (E Liquids are regulated under the same regulation as Tobacco products despite not containing tobacco!) and create rules that are nonsensical and irrelevant.
As a panel, all members agreed that CBD regulations couldn’t come soon enough but had to be well thought out and have a proper enforcing body behind them to ensure that products not following the rules stipulated by the legislation are not available on the market.
The outcry for regulation has been heard by the CMC who have created the ACI (Association for the Cannabinoid Industry) who will be launching their charter on Friday 8th November. More information on this to follow in an upcoming blog post.
Head of Technical & Development