First CBD Novel Foods applications granted safety approval in the UK

By Nikki Hancocks

- Last updated on GMT

24k Production / Getty Images
24k Production / Getty Images

Related tags Cbd Novel food Regulation

After "a seemingly never-ending saga", the UK CBD industry has been granted its first two safety approvals for Novel Foods applications from manufacturers Cannaray Brands and Chanelle McCoy.

The decisions come five long years after the European Commission decided CBD products were to be considered as novel foods.

This FSA Scientific Committee endorsement indicates that the companies successfully fulfilled the rigorous safety criteria necessary to progress to the final stage of the Novel Food Licensing process - formal licensing.

Both authorizations are at a level of 10 mg for use in supplement, beverage and confectionary for adults for Cannaray Brands (98% Isolate) and food supplements only for Chanelle McCoy (98% Synthetic), after a provisional Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) of 10 mg/day was published by the FSA last year​.

"We’re thrilled to share that Cannaray CBD's journey in the novel food application process has taken a significant leap forward," the brand announced on its LinkedIn. "We've successfully transitioned from the rigorous phase of risk assessment to the pivotal stage of risk management!

"This advancement to the risk management stage is a testament to Cannaray’s unwavering dedication to excellence and compliance," said Cannaray Brands MD Howard Radcliffe. "We are proud to be at the forefront of driving innovation and establishing best practices within the UK CBD industry. This achievement not only validates our efforts but also reinforces our position as a trusted leader in this rapidly growing sector."

Ever since the EC updated its Novel Foods catalog to include CBD, companies working in this space have been unable to bring new CBD products to market, and legality has remained uncertain for brands, suppliers, customers, retailers and investors—with the latter perhaps having the most impact on the industry.  

CBD Novel Food History 

2019​ - The European Commission updated the Novel Food Catalogue to state that extracts of Cannabis sativa​ L. and derived products containing cannabinoids were to be considered as novel foods.

As a result, all extracts of hemp and derived products containing cannabinoids (including CBD) were regarded by the European Commission as novel.

Contemporaneously, the FSA committed to implementing a process for accessing Novel Food applications.

February 2020​ - A policy for implementing this process was announced, and a deadline for applications to the FSA was set for March 31, 2021.

January 2021​ - The Home Office stated its intention to establish a legal framework for consumer CBD products in a commissioning letter to the Advisory Council on The Misuse of Drugs (ACMD).

The ACMD response was published in December of that year.

Oct. 12, 2023​ – The FSA says, "based on the average lifetime exposure to food products containing CBD", healthy adults should limit their consumption of CBD (>98% purity) from food or beverages to 10 milligrams per day. That’s equivalent to four or five drops of a 5% CBD oil.

Oct. 24,​ 2023​ – The Home Office accepted the position of the ACMD in December 2021, which recommended that legislation be updated so that CBD ingestibles can legally contain up to 50 micrograms of controlled cannabinoids (including THC) per unit of consumption or serving.

Shomi Malik, commercial and strategy lead at the premium white label CBD supplement supplier B3 Labs commented on the update on LinkedIn: "Does this mean more authorizations are on the horizon? Massive news for the industry, after a seemingly never-ending saga."

Chanelle McCoy, CEO of Chanelle McCoy Health, the brand owner of the lab-made pure CBD brand Pureis, said of the assessment: "This is a monumental achievement and a complete game-changer for the CBD industry.

"We are thrilled Pureis is the first CBD brand globally to receive this Positive Safety Assessment officially from a leading regulatory authority. Unwavering in our pursuit of excellence, we're positively shaping the CBD industry with compliant, science-backed products."

With this milestone, McCoy said the company is poised to expand its product portfolio, incorporating CBD and other active ingredients into new Orals and Topicals.

"This strategic expansion aims to help the consumer navigate the product they choose for their particular needs," she said. "These expansion plans not only signify diversification of the Pureis product range but also offer the potential of new job opportunities and economic growth within the UK."

Follow us


View more