Press release by The European Industrial Hemp Association (www.eiha.org)
Hürth, 17 January 2018
Pre-review of CBD by the World Health Organization (WHO) with favorable results – next step in May
Researchers, manufacturers, and consumers lobbying for the commercialization of cannabidiol (CBD) have cleared a second major obstacle, with the World Health Organization’s (WHO) preliminary examination of the material in Geneva in November 2017 yielding positive results.
CBD has been pre-reviewed by WHO as a potential psychotropic chemical for the first time, with the risk that WHO would suggest stringent control measures similar to those proposed for THC. The UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs must eventually vote on WHO’s expert recommendations (CND). “This round concluded pleasantly, but the second phase of the CBD evaluation will take place in May,” said Boris Baas, a board member of the European Industrial Hemp Association and member of The Hemp Cooperative (Slovakia) (EIHA). Before the first stage of the WHO review, EIHA collaborated with the Foundation for Alternative Approaches to Addiction – Think & Do Tank (FAAAT) to produce a joint statement of guidance. www.hemptoday.net/eiha-takes-cbd-statement-beforewho/
The second and last stage of the review will take place in May 2018 at the WHO’s 40th Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD).
The EIHA praised the work of independent WHO experts who approved pure CBD in early November. They come to the conclusion that there is no reason for pure CBD to be included in anti-drug treaties, and they go on to say that there have been no cases of CBD-related misuse or dependence. Furthermore, the usage of the CBD molecule has not been linked to any public health issues (such as impaired driving). Furthermore, no proof could be produced that CBD is subject to the same levels of abuse or negative consequences as chemicals listed under the 1961 or 1971 Conventions (including cannabis and THC). CBD products are now being researched for a variety of medicinal purposes and have shown to be useful in the treatment of epilepsy in some cases. Beyond pure CBD, WHO experts discovered that CBD-products are being made for therapeutic purposes as Cannabis extracts or tinctures, which are covered by the 1961 Narcotic Drugs Convention. They suggested in May that “extracts or formulations comprising virtually entirely CBD […] be submitted to critical review” (ref:www.who.int/mason/entity/medicines/news/2017/letter-DG39thECDDrecommendations.pdf).
On the 6th of November 2017, I was present at a WHO meeting on CBD: EIHA was represented by associate member Hana Gabrielová in addition to Boris Baas (Hempoint, Czech Republic). Kenzi Riboulet Zemouli, Farid Ghehiouèche, and Amy Case King represented FAAAT. Michael Krawitz (Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access, USA), Raul Hector Elizalde Garza (Por Grace, Mexico), Dusan Nolimal and Tanja Bagar -2- (International Institute for Cannabinoids, Slovenia), and Marie Nougier (International Institute for Cannabinoids, Slovenia) were among the other CBD proponents in attendance (International Drug Policy Consortium). Bluebird Botanicals, Buddingtech, CannaWell, CBD life UK, CBD oils UK, CBDepot.eu, Deep Nature Project, Greenindustries.shop, Hemp and humanity, HempConsult GmbH, Hempflax, Hempire Ltd., Hempoint.cz, Hempura, MCU Botanicals, MeetHarmony, MH medical hemp GmbH were among the companies that supported a campaign supporting the EIHA-FAAAT statement and advocacy The declaration was also endorsed by the DC-based NGO StopTheDrugWar.org and the European coalition ENCOD.