ROME, Italy – Italy’s Ministry of Health updates the notification to the European Commission from November 2018, setting the maximum THC levels for CBD oil and other supplements and foodstuffs containing cannabis derivatives.
The decree now confirms the maximum THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) content in food supplements and other products containing cannabis derivatives is at two milligrams per kilogram.
According to the managing director at Hylobates Consulting, Luca Bucchini, the decree will provide legal certainty in terms of the use of certain cannabis derivatives, including the oils derived from hemp seeds, hemp seeds, as well as hemp flour. He also explained that with the new update, it shows that the Ministry of Health of the country is permitting the use of such substances in food supplements, although indirectly as the formal goal of the decree is to establish the maximum THC levels in foods.
Bucchini also added that the decree would help launch an official analytical method, which was previously proposed by the EC. He said that the recent update on the EC notification for 2018 would mean that cannabis derivatives, in certain, can be used. Stronger analytical protocols can now be set up, Bucchini added.
Furthermore, he stated that the decree, most importantly, will pave the way for other cannabis derivatives to be added with minimal effort.
The decree was published in the official journal of the Ministry of Health of Italy on January 15. Aside from setting the maximum THC concentration in supplements, it also sets the maximum allowed THC content for seeds and seed flour, which is at two milligrams per kilogram (2mg/kg) and CBD oil or oil derived from hemp seeds at five milligrams per kilogram (5mg/kg).
Meanwhile, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) released a warning earlier this month regarding the potential effects of consuming large doses of hemp products, especially to the cardiovascular system and the heart.
A report was published in the official journal of EFSA, which outlined the possible complications as a result of excessive consumption of the psychoactive compound found in cannabis products, or the THC. The report also recommended encouraging member states to collect and submit more occurrence data for THC in food and other products to EFSA.
Also, the legality of placing CBD oil products in the EU market will depend on the manufacturing process of the product. Hemp oils are also required to obtain authorization from the Novel Food Regulation from the EU before it can be sold to the public.
And while there are still no health claims regarding CBD that is authorized by the EC regulation, the recent decree from Italy’s Ministry on the maximum THC levels for CBD oils and supplements is a significant start for the market.