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FSA relaxes novel food deadline demands

FSA relaxes novel food deadline demands

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The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has updated its criteria for CBD products to remain on sale after April 1.

Previously, only products that were on sale on February 13, 2020 and linked to an application that had been validated by the March 31, 2021 deadline could continue to be sold.

Now, the criteria applies to all products on sale on February 13, 2020 and linked to an application submitted prior to the March 31, 2021 deadline.

The decision was welcomed by the Association for the Cannabinoid Industry (ACI).

The organisation urged its members who haven’t already done so to submit their application ‘as soon as possible’.

The ACI’s External Affairs Director, Shomi Malik, said:

“Today’s update from the FSA is a welcome one.

“The March 31 deadline is now for submission, rather than validation.”

The FSA said that the move will ‘maximise the opportunity to pass validation’, as companies across the UK scramble to meet compliance.

Emily Miles, Chief Executive of the FSA, said:

“Applying for novel food authorisation is the only way CBD products can remain on sale here. For the past year, we’ve been encouraging all businesses to submit good quality applications as a matter of urgency. 

“However, we have received a large number of applications close to the deadline. This means that, in order to process these properly, we are adapting the criteria of products allowed to remain on sale from 1 April.

“For some time now we’ve been supporting a pragmatic and proportionate approach to CBD regulation. Our commitment to ensuring that consumers know these products are being checked for safety remains firm.”

Following an 8-day admin check, it will take up to 30 days for an application to be validated by the FSA.

The next stage is the authorisation process to determine whether a product meets the strict requirements to be sold as a novel food product in the UK.

The FSA said that it will maintain a list of validated applications as well as a list of products linked to applications that have not yet been validated but have demonstrated ‘robust plans’ to meet the requirements.

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