Strict European CBD Regulations are strangling German business whilst American businesses like West Coast Ventures Corp. (OTC: WCVC) can take advantage of new cannabis trends like CBD edibles.
German companies risk missing out on the CBD boom because of draconian local and EU cannabis & Hemp regulations. In contrast American companies, like the CBD Restaurant company West Coast Ventures Corp. (OTC: WCVC) are able to benefit from America’s cannabis-friendly regulatory climate.
Since the approval of cannabis as a drug in 2017, a parallel market with hemp products has established itself. Unlike medicinal hemp, it has no intoxicating effect. Sales to private individuals have been prohibited in Germany since March. In contrast the Farm Bill has allowed American CBD companies to thrive.
For example West Coast Ventures Corp. has taken the opportunity to position itself as America’s first CBD Restaurant stock. Through their Illegal Brands companies, such as Illegal Burger & Illegal Pizza, WCVC has created a unique offering for investors. All of their locations sell Illegal Brands CBD water, and CBD sachets that can be added to food.
The tricky part in Europe is the way Hemp is treated in comparison to the US. Medicinal Hemp, which contains THC, and thus has a psychoactive effect, has been approved in Germany since 2017. “Useful Hemp” on the other hand must contain less than 0.2% THC. If this specific limit is adhered to there are no real health concerns yet CBD in Europe, and Germany, remains a grey market.
A growing grey market
Over the past two years, a rapidly growing market has established itself for hemp products. Concrete sales figures for this young industry are not yet available. However, experts attest to its great potential. Especially “CBD oil” is in great demand because it has the reputation of being pain- and anti-inflammatory.
CBD oil is offered as a dietary supplement. The suppliers are therefore not allowed to recommend a dosage nor to promise an effect. Consumers, however, exchange their experiences – in customer reviews of online shops, for example, or in relevant social media groups. According to this, many people use CBD oil successfully, for example for osteoarthritis pain, migraine, insomnia or depression.
Limited clinical studies slow adoption
Food and dietary supplements containing CBD are relatively new products. There are hardly any reliable scientific findings yet. “There are simply very few studies so far on hemp and therefore the whole effects that are said to be caused by hemp at the moment simply cannot be substantiated by studies,” says nutritionist Kathrin Hausleiter to Bayerischer Rundfunk. According to Hausleiter, there has also not been enough research into possible side effects.
Since March of this year, CBD-containing products have been considered “novel food” according to an EU regulation. The sale to private consumers is not permitted. In comparison in the United States companies are able to freely sell, and advertise, their products and the market is predicted to grow to $20 billion by 2024.
First German CBD oil exclusively for sale in pharmacies
The Federal Office for Food Safety (BVL) currently designates CBD-containing products as not marketable. From the point of view of the BVL, products containing CBD must either be subject to an application for approval of a medicinal product or an application for approval of a novel foodstuff before they are sold. Within the framework of these procedures, the safety of the product must be demonstrated by the applicant.
For small start-ups, this hurdle is difficult to surmount due to financial constraints. Recently the first German pharmaceutical company announced that it would now launch CBD-Öl as a dietary supplement for exclusive sale in pharmacies. In the meantime, West Coast Ventures Corp. (OTC: WCVC) and other American CBD companies continue to thrive whilst German companies find themselves being left behind.