EFSA put CBD novel food evaluations on hold pending new data

14 June 2022

Article: 56/2308

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has announced its scientists cannot currently establish the safety of cannabidiol (CBD) as a novel food, due to data gaps and uncertainties about potential hazards related to CBD intake. 

Cannabidiol is a substance that can be obtained from Cannabis sativa L. plants and can be synthesised chemically as well. The European Commission considers that CBD qualifies as a novel food provided it meets the conditions of EU legislation on novel foods. Following the submission of numerous applications for CBD under the novel food regulation, the commission asked the EFSA to give its opinion on whether its consumption is safe for humans. 

The EFSA’s expert panel on Nutrition, Novel Foods and Food Allergens (NDA) has received 19 applications for CBD as a novel food, with more expected. They conclude that there is currently insufficient data on the effect of CBD on the liver, gastrointestinal tract, endocrine system, nervous system and on people’s psychological well-being. Studies in animals show significant adverse effects especially in relation to reproduction and the EFSA highlight that it is important to determine if these effects are also seen in humans.

Source: EFSA, 7 June 2022