The legal status of cannabis products in the EU is confusing. Due to the novel food regulation, goods like CBD oil in Ireland are now in a grey legal area. Both possession of cannabis and cultivation is illegal in Ireland and can result in fines and imprisonment. However, Irish law does allow the sale of CBD. CBD Gummies are the edible candies containing cannabidiol (CBD) oil. Gummies come in a variety of shapes, colors, flavors, and CBD concentrations.
The Legal Status of CBD Oil in Ireland
What’s next for CBD oil in Ireland? No one can say for sure. But as of now, CBD products classified as novel foods are safe, legal, and here to stay.
The legal status of cannabis products in the EU today has become confusing. Due to the novel food regulation, goods like CBD oil in Ireland are now in a grey legal area.
As you may have noticed, some stores in Dublin are selling CBD products that contain less than 0.2% THC — however, cannabis-derived CBD is still illegal. The easiest way to sell a CBD product is by classifying it as a novel food, not a medicinal supplement.
So, what is the CBD oil law in Ireland? This article will tell you everything you need to know.
How Is CBD Oil Currently Classified?
In Ireland, CBD is not considered an illegal drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act. It can be legally bought and sold as a food product if it doesn’t contain any THC.
However, CBD is also not classified as a medicine. That means it cannot be prescribed by a doctor or sold as a medicinal product in pharmacies and drug stores. Any hemp or CBD-related product must be marketed as a supplement or food product legally sold in Ireland.
CBD vs. THC: What’s the Difference?
CBD stands for cannabidiol — it’s one of the two main chemicals derived from the hemp plant. The other is tetrahydrocannabinol or THC.
Man putting CBD oil in tea; image by Evopure CBD, via Unsplash.com.
To put it simply, THC contains psychoactive properties, while CBD does not. That’s why products containing THC are still illegal in Ireland. Recent updates to Irish law have classified CBD as a non-cannabis product, so it is legal to sell in stores as long as it contains less than 0.2% THC.
The Novel Food Status of Hemp
Hemp products, including CBD oil, can be classified as novel foods if they meet certain specifications.
A novel food is any ingestible food or ingredient that was not available on the EU market before May of 1997. These products must go through a strict authorization process before they are eligible to be sold.
Now, this is where it gets tricky — some cold-pressed hemp oils do not need to be authorized as novel foods because they were already consumed in the EU before 1997. Oils produced by cold pressing hemp seeds or other parts of the plant are legal to sell as food supplements without applying for authorization without the use of chemicals or solvents for extraction.
According to the Novel Food Catalogue, a hemp-derived product has to be extracted using safe methods to be considered a novel food. Every CBD oil manufacturer who uses extraction or purification techniques must independently apply for novel food authorization before selling their oil on the EU market.
In 2021, there will be another legal shift in the UK and Ireland for CBD manufacturers and retailers. Any new CBD product that has not been authorized as a novel food before March 31st of this year will have to be taken off the shelves.
For that reason, CBD manufacturers should submit their applications as soon as possible.
Applying for Novel Food Authorization
Wondering how you can classify your CBD oil as a novel food? It isn’t too difficult — the most important thing is to start your application right away to meet the March 31st deadline.
Here’s what you need to know:
For CBD Manufacturers
As a CBD oil manufacturer, it is your responsibility to submit an application for novel food authorization to the Regulated Products Portal.
The current processing time for applications is around one month. If you want your application to be approved as quickly as possible, make sure to include all the necessary data and information about your product.
Incomplete applications will not be processed — which means you won’t get your novel food authorization before the March 31st deadline.
For CBD Resellers
If you sell pre-branded or white-labeled CBD products, you should contact your supplier about the novel food authorization application.
It’s crucial that your specific products are mentioned in the application. Otherwise, they will not be considered novel foods and cannot be sold. Resellers can’t fill out independent applications for authorization, so make sure you communicate with your supplier!
For CBD Secondary Producers
If you bottle, blend or reformulate another manufacturer’s CBD product, your product can be included in your supplier’s application.
Secondary producers can also fill out an independent application for authorization, known as a “piggyback application.” You will need to provide stability and shelf-life tests to certify the safety of your product.
Marketing CBD Oil
If you are selling CBD oil classified as a novel food, it has to be appropriately labeled and marketed. Any food product with false or misleading marketing can lose its legal status.
Remember, non-cannabis CBD is legal in Ireland, but it is not classified as a medicinal product. Claiming that your CBD oil has medicinal properties is against the law.
So, how can you keep yourself and your product safe? Be careful about the wording used on your labels and in your advertising. Claims that your product will “treat,” “cure,” or “heal” an illness or medical problem are illegal. Those laws extend to what you post on social media or say out loud to customers!
As long as your CBD oil is not marketed with any health claims, you won’t have to worry about it losing its novel food authorization.
The legal status of CBD oil and other hemp-derived products in Ireland is complicated. Laws are always changing and being rewritten — as a CBD oil manufacturer, reseller, or producer, keeping up with the latest changes can be exhausting.
That said, it’s important to keep yourself in the know! This article covered the current legal status of CBD products in Ireland, but more information may be made available throughout the year. Do your research and check back regularly to make sure your product is safe!
What’s next for CBD oil in Ireland? No one can say for sure. But as of now, CBD products classified as novel foods are safe, legal, and here to stay.
Weed in Ireland: What are the current marijuana laws?
While the country has a limited medical cannabis program in place, the Emerald Isle still lags behind many countries in Europe when it comes to cannabis legalization.
Both possession of cannabis and cultivation is illegal in Ireland and can result in fines and imprisonment. However, Irish law does allow the sale of CBD.
But even if Ireland is a good bit behind countries like Spain, Portugal, and the Netherlands, there may be a reason for optimism. A poll in May 2021 found that nearly 40% of Irish citizens support legalizing cannabis for recreational use, and over 90% support the legalization of medical marijuana. Only 4% of respondents said they are opposed to medical cannabis.
Is weed legal in Ireland? Possible penalties
Under Ireland’s Misuse of Drugs Act, 1984, a person caught in possession of cannabis or cannabis resin can be subject to a fine of up to £300 if it is their first offense on summary conviction, or up to £500 if convicted on indictment. For a second offense, the sums are £400 and £1,000, respectively. For the third offense, the penalty can be a fine of up to £1,000, or imprisonment of up to three years if indicted.
Cultivation of cannabis is also illegal, and can result in a fine or a prison sentence of up to 12 months on summary conviction, and up to 14 years if convicted on indictment.
How do the Irish generally view marijuana?
Conservative world views appear to apply in Ireland when it comes to cannabis, at least on the official level.
In May, 2021, the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland warned that cannabis is “the gravest threat to the mental health of young people in Ireland today,” largely due to the increased potency of today’s cannabis, and the fact that in their words, the public believes it is harmless.
The conservative approach can also be seen in the country’s medical cannabis program, which is one of the more restrictive in Europe.
But there may be other glimmers of hope. In April, 2018, the Green Party called for the opening of Amsterdam style “coffee shops,” the decriminalization of possession of up to 5 grams of cannabis for personal use, and the cultivation of up to two plants per private residence.
Also, a 2016 survey of 507 Irish students aged 15-18 found that 39.4% reported previous cannabis use, but only 18.2% support legalization.
Does Irish law permit for medical patients?
Medical cannabis was started in 2021 under specific conditions in limited products only in Ireland (Shutterstock)
In 2019, Ireland’s Minister for Health signed legislation to allow a pilot plan for medical cannabis, which launched in 2021 and is set to run for five years.
The government lists only four cannabis-based products as accepted under the Medical Cannabis Programme:
- Aurora High CBD oil drops
- CannEpil (0.5% THC, 10% CBD)
- Tilray Oral Solution (1% THC and 1% CBD)
- Aurora Sedamen Softgels (5mg THC per capsule)
The cannabis-based medication Sativex, commonly used to treat spasticity problems and pain associated with MS, is also approved for use in Ireland. Along with Sativex, the cannabis-based medicine Epidylolex is approved for use with specific conditions like severe forms of pediatric epilepsy and can be prescribed by a physician.
The medical cannabis program has been the subject of criticism in Ireland, largely because of the limited selection of products – which do not include cannabis flower or any high-THC formulations – and the fact that chronic pain is not one of the accepted medical conditions.
Who qualifies for medical cannabis in Ireland and what is the average cost?
According to the government of Ireland, under the Medical Cannabis Access Programme, a medical consultant can prescribe a cannabis-based treatment for a patient with the following conditions, who has not responded to other treatments:
- Spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis
- Intractable nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy
- Severe, refractory (treatment-resistant) epilepsy
A medical consultant may prescribe medical cannabis for up to 6 months in Ireland.
Another route to acquire medical cannabis is by way of ministerial approval. A patient can access any medical cannabis product for any medical condition with the written approval of the Minister of Health. Only 63 patients in Ireland have access to medicine in this fashion, according to Prohibition Partners.
Medical cannabis products are subject to reimbursement from Ireland’s Health Services Executive, but being enrolled in the MCAP does not automatically guarantee reimbursement. Instead, the Ministry of Health states that reimbursement will be on a patient-to-patient basis and according to the patient’s eligibility under the following conditions:
- Treatment is consultant-initiated
- Online reimbursement approval is required for each patient
- All standard approved treatments have been exhausted for that patient
- New patients are initiated on Irish pharmacy-supplied medical cannabis products.
The decision to allow reimbursement of medical cannabis is a recent one, and previously some patients would pay thousands of Euros per month for their medicine.
Visiting Ireland – can you buy or bring marijuana products?
While CBD is legal to purchase in the country, if you are a tourist you should not buy weed in Ireland or bring your own. It is not legal and you will not receive a visitor’s exemption or be able to use your medical cannabis license from back home.
CBD Gummies In Ireland – What You Need To Know
CBD Gummies are the edible candies containing cannabidiol (CBD) oil. Gummies come in a variety of shapes, colors, flavors, and CBD concentrations. They offer an easy and discreet way of ingesting CBD in Ireland, and effective marketing campaigns by manufacturers has led to an increase in their popularity among both nonusers and long-standing CBD users.
The vast majority of CBD products in Ireland aren’t approved, which is why purity levels and strengths often vary between brands and even within the same brand, which means that there’s never a guarantee that you will get what you think you are getting.
CBDOilIreland.ie is a noted seller of quality CBD products and is renowned for selling some of the best quality CBD gummies in Ireland, among other CBD and hemp products.
Do CBD Gummies in Ireland Have Any Health Benefits?
The manufacturers of CBD gummies in Ireland claim that CBD is effective at relieving pain, depression, anxiety, inflammation, and improving sleep according to Cormac Reynolds of CBDoilireland.ie
Research into the effectiveness of CBD oil, however, has only focused on pure CBD oil, not CBD gummies. Even when it comes to pure CBD oil, there are only a handful of properly-conducted trials that support its apparent health benefits. Research is expected to ramp up now that the laws distinguish between marijuana and hemp.
No scientific evidence is currently available proving that CBD gummies work, even though anecdotally some people have reported a benefit and there’s likely a strong placebo effect (taking something to relieve your condition can make you feel better even if the actual product contains nothing).
Keep in mind that CBD is a rather bitter substance, and many CBD gummies actually contain copious amounts of added sugar to disguise this taste suggests Cormac from CBDOilIreland.ie
Are CBD Products in Ireland Actually Legal?
CBD products derived from hemp and containing less than 0.2% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are legal in Ireland and the EU. CBD products derived from marijuana are illegal within the EU.
Will CBD Gummies Make You High?
CBD gummies don’t have psychoactive properties, which means that they won’t make you high.
CBD is derived from hemp, which is nearly devoid of THC. THC is the chemical found in marijuana that gives you a high. For hemp to be actually considered as such, it must contain no more than 0.3% hemp. Otherwise, growers’ risk being prosecuted under law.
CBD is the key active ingredient in hemp, but it doesn’t have any psychoactive properties. However, CBD has been credited with relieving insomnia, inflammation, anxiety, pain, and insomnia, although “credited” doesn’t mean proven.
What’s the Difference Between Cannabis, Marijuana, Hemp, CBD, and THC?
Confusion still exists regarding what CBD is, with many people assuming that hemp, cannabis, marijuana, THC, and CBD are the same thing, but they aren’t.
Cannabis is a plant, and there are two main types; Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica. Marijuana can be derived from both types, but hemp is only derived from the Cannabis Sativa family.
It therefore means that while hemp and marijuana have some things in common, there are some notable differences, with the biggest one being that hemp is almost devoid of THC, which is the chemical in marijuana that gives you a high. In fact, by law, hemp should contain no more than 0.2% THC to be regarded as help, otherwise, growers risk prosecution under law.
CBD is the key active ingredient in hemp and it doesn’t have psychoactive properties whatsoever. However, CBD has been credited with relieving inflammation, anxiety, pain, and insomnia, although there’s limited scientific evidence that CBD works, except for epilepsy.
Besides the medicinal uses of CBD, hemp is also an excellent resource for making 100% biodegradable, eco-friendly products such as clothing, building materials, paper, and biofuel.
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