What will happen when cannabis is rescheduled


The new classification means products containing CBD can now be legally distributed across the United Kingdom…

“We have come to the opinion that products containing cannabidiol (CBD) used for medical purposes are a medicine,” said an MHRA spokesperson on the agency’s website. “MHRA will now work with individual companies and trade bodies in relation to making sure products containing CBD, used for a medical purpose, which can be classified as medicines, satisfy the legal requirements of the Human Medicines Regulations 2012.” …

In view of the fact that UK-based GW Pharmaceuticals has made huge strides recently with its CBD-based Epidiolex for rare, treatment-resistant epilepsy…


Last week the MHRA started issuing letters to UK CBD suppliers advising them of this decision and that sales of CBD products must stop within 28 days.

According to Peter Reynolds from UK medical cannabis activist group CLEAR Cannabis Law Reform, ‘It means CBD has become subject to medicine’s regulation as it applies in the UK which means either it has to have a marketing authorisation, which is the new word for a license, or traditional herbal registration. I think it’s unlikely to get a traditional herbal registration because you have to be able to show it’s been used as a herbal medicine for at least 30 years and I’m not sure anyone could say that about CBD’.

He continues, ‘so in other words it is going to have to have a full marketing authorization which is a massively expensive process. Just the fee for filling in the application form is £103,000 and then you have to provide clinical trials data. It’s massive. I don’t see how you can do it’.

So left in a CBD-less vacuum, many of the UK’s CBD buying consumers will find themselves without a domestic source to buy from.

Something that concerns neurologist Professor Mike Barnes, Scientific and Medical advisor to Clear. In an official statement he states, ‘It is encouraging that the MHRA is recognising that CBD has medicinal value but it is concerning that many people benefitting from CBD now will suffer in the short term as good quality manufacturers have to stop production pending MHRA approval’…

In the UK Cannabis is currently classified as having no therapeutic benefit and so logic would dictate that if one of its active compounds has been classed as medicine, than this status will eventually change as well.

Professor Barnes: ‘The only good news coming out of this debacle is that this could be the beginning of proper, honest regulation of cannabis as medicine. But if we’re looking at clinical trials before CBD can be marketed again, it could be many years away and that’s after someone or some company decides to invest the £250,000 or more that could cost’.

In the meantime, UK CBD users will be left in an illegal hinterland if they wish to continue using the products that they say help with their illnesses.

If you are a UK based CBD user and feel your voice hasn’t been heard, you can sign the following petition recently launched on 38 Degrees calling for the MHRA to ‘consider other means of approving CBD products so that patients do not suffer the consequences of this decision whilst stricter regulations are decided upon’.