Is the Industry Ready for CBD?

CBD has been growing its popularity among consumers in the last few years. However, we don’t see nutricosmetics products on the market containing it, especially in the food supplements industry. What is holding the industry back? 

The benefits of CBD

It is believed that CBD has promising general wellbeing and health contribution. There are 3 main health benefits: pain relief, stress management, and sleep aid. And all three influence our skin. It has been scientifically proven that CBD can help to manage and reduce stress and anxiety, which break down collagen. This is very beneficial for the beauty industry and skin. It is called beauty sleep for a reason. A good sleep cycle is essential for general wellbeing, and lack of sleep is stressful, influencing how we look and age. CBD’s promising application is that it can improve your sleep quality. 

Can CBD be used in food supplements?

There is no straight answer to this question. It depends on the market. CBD is regulated differently in different markets. 

In Europe, CBD, as an ingredient, comes under the Novel Food Regulation. Novel Food is defined as food that had not been consumed significantly by humans in the EU before 15 May 1997, when the first Regulation on Novel Food came into force. Such ingredients need to be proven safe for consumption. The process takes years. And this applies to CBD as well. 

Technically, CBD is not allowed to be used as an ingestible, i.e., in food supplements, anywhere in the EU. In the UK, CBD can be sold as a food supplement if the product has been on the market before February 2021. The UK is out of the EU, and the market is regulated by FSA (Food Standard Agency) and not by EFSA (The European Food Safety Authority). In The States, regulatory is not that unified and is different from state to state. Some states allow the use of it in food supplements, while others do not. 

The entire UK CBD market, including all CBD products, is estimated to be 2 billion EUR. And it is expected to grow at a CAGR of almost 30 % by 2027. It is a promising market. However, because of the current Novel Food Regulations, the prominent market players working in the nutraceutical and nutricosmetics world are still held back. They are waiting for some regulations to be more precise before entering the market. 

When can we expect the regulations to change?

It is expected that the products containing CBD will be widely sold in the EU as cosmetics, nutricosmetics and food supplements after the EU member states adopt all the approvals. It is hard to say when this will happen, but some believe (or hope) that the entire process can take around 3 to 4 years. 

As said, CBD is not allowed as an ingestible ingredient in the EU but can be used as a topical ingredient. And even topical usage is highly regulated. Because the EU countries follow the general EU regulations, the regulations between the countries are very similar. Similar, but not the same. Different countries have different regulations which makes it hard for a third-party manufacturer to follow all and navigate production. However, it is expected to get unified once CBD is proven to be safe for consumption. The question is, how long will this take before we are able to add them to nutricosmetics products and get all the beauty benefits it is promising? 




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