Status of Hemp Extracts in Europe

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To clarify: We are talking about “hemp” (Cannabis sativa L.), which is authorized under the EU’s Common Catalogue of Varieties of Agricultural Plant species (Reg. 1308/2013). Commonly hemp is known for its historic use as food and its use for rope, textiles and paper.

Most foods and food ingredients from the hemp plant were exempt from the scope of “Novel Food” Regulation (EC) No 258/97.

Without further industry consultation, the wording of the NF catalogue was changed in January 2019. According to the newly phrased “entry”, which is not a legally-binding document for Member States:

• Only seed derived products are considered food,

• Leaves and flowers are now considered not explicitly exempt from the scope of Novel Food (Regulation (EU) 2015/2283) which has moved them from previously foods into a ‘grey zone’, and

• A new entry, called Cannabinoids, was created which now states that all  hemp extracts are novel food.

The word extract derives from latin “extrahere” (draw out, remove), it means any method that uses a (solid, liquid or gaseous) extraction agent (= can be simply physical pressure) to remove one or several components from a substance mixture (of solid, liquid or gaseous substances). In Europe today there are four main extraction methods to obtain hemp extracts (including CBD).

1. Cold pressing: The simplest extract from hemp fruiting tops is hempseed oil which has been in human consumption for millennia.

2. Ethanol extraction: Using alcohol to whole fruiting tops (infructescense) and leaves. Ethanol extractions for botanicals have been used for centuries.

3. CO2 extraction: Using supercritical carbon dioxide to whole fruiting tops (infructescences) and leaves. CO2 extraction alongside ethanol extractions are permitted for food use under Attachment I of Directive 2009/32/EC.

4. Fat extraction: Can easily be used for home-made preparations such as an Italian recipe for Tortelli with hemp flowers discovered in an 1884 Italian cookbook.

We build Industrial Site for Cannabis Oil Extraction. See more at:  PHARMAIUM



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