By / January 28, 2020

Consumer advice center warns about CBD in Germany

The Federation of German Consumer Organisations (VZBZ) has now spoken out and issued a warning about CBD in Germany.

According to the consumer advice center, edibles containing CBD as well as cannabis-based supplements are trendy but are not without danger for consumers. The political organization, supported by the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection, advises against the consumption of CBD in Germany.

Read the latest industry news on CBD products with the mobile app. This app is the leading source of legal, medical, and B2B news for the cannabis and CBD industry.

VZBZ expresses concern about the difference between THC and CBD in Germany

“A real hype has developed around CBD in Germany, but it is not clear how risky CBD-containing foods are,” the organization explained. “Thus, it should be regarded with skepticism if some manufacturers advertise their products as help for menstrual problems, sleep disorders or depression. These products may contain harmful amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which is psychoactive.”

The consumer advice center continues to explain that in contrast to THC, CBD has no intoxicating (psychoactive) effect.

“However, numerous undesirable effects are known. For example, CBD can cause drowsiness and dizziness for one in 10 users. In addition, questions about dosage, safety and interactions have not yet been clarified,” the organization states.

Products with CBD in Germany could have misleading labels

CBD product representing CBD in Germany
Consumers use CBD for a variety of conditions like insomnia and menstrual pain, however, the VZBZ warns about misleading products. (Source)

Moreover, the Consumer Center believes that CBD products in Germany are traded illegally.

“Foods containing CBD are not approved as novel food and should therefore not be sold as food,” the organization refers in this context to the Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL.)

In the view of the BVL, suppliers “must submit either an application for approval of a medical product or an application for approval as a “Novel Food” before placing products containing CBD in Germany on the market. This also applies to food supplements.

“It is not acceptable that, for example, chewing gums containing CBD in Germany are on sale even though they have no approval. Sensitive target groups such as children and young people must be protected. Sweets, chocolate or soft drinks often contain questionable cannabis ingredients of unclear origin,” said the agency.

The organization also states that the suppliers of CBD in Germany use images of cannabis leaves and terms such as “intoxicating,” “high” or “addictive” for advertising.

“We believe this is a dangerous trivialization of cannabis,” the VZBZ states.

Laws get in the way of better CBD in Germany

German flag representing cannabis in Germany
In Germany, some believe that there is a government agenda against cannabis followed by the Federation of German Consumer Organizations (VZBZ). (Source)

Finally, the Federation of German Consumer Organizations complains about the authorities which are responsible for the approval of CBD in Germany in the individual federal states, thereby unnecessarily complicating and lengthening the testing procedure for the approval of cannabis products.

With this warning, the political umbrella organization of the consumer centers, which sees itself as the “strong voice of all consumers in Germany,” is completely in line with those players who want to restrict free trade in cannabis products and regulate it in their favor.


(Featured image by Pharma Hemp Complex via Unsplash)

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