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Centre for Medicinal Cannabis survey on CBD use in the UK June 2019: the key points.

In June of this year the centre for Medicinal Cannabis released its report. Broadly they are calling for politicians, policy-makers, regulators, producers and retailers to push harder to achieve a shared goal of a UK CBD sector that is innovative, responsible and high-quality, delivering both economic benefits, social value, and wellbeing for individuals.

The report states that the CBD market is one of the single fastest growing industries in the UK and that it should reach by 2025 a value of 1 billion pounds a year. Equal in size to that of the herbal supplement market.

The reports key recommendations are;

  • Government to amend existing out of date legislation.
  • Regulators to provide clarity relating to current policy.
  • The medical profession to invest in research, and Business operators to embrace robust self-regulation.
  • They also seek to create an industry support self-regulator with a permanent laboratory for testing and accreditation.
  • The other key findings were that the CBD industry is perhaps 3 to 4 times larger than previously estimated. 3 million consumers are spending over £300M per year on CBD products. For comparison the CBD market is larger than the total UK Vitamin D (£145M) and Vitamin C market (£119M) combined.
  •  The majority of CBD users indicated that they purchased their CBD online.

Key findings from the survey conducted;

  • Approximately 6 million adults have used CBD in the UK. 11% of the population had consumed a CBD product in the last year.
  • Recent use rates were higher in the under 55 age groups, ranging from 15% of 25-34 year olds, to 7% of 55-64 year olds and 8% of those aged 65+.
  • Usage was higher on average among females (13%) than males (9%). Use was higher in certain parts of the country, namely Wales and Northern Ireland.
  • Three quarters of respondents agreed that UK hemp farmers should be able to process hemp flowers and leaves to supply CBD market. Currently all CBD source material sold in the UK is imported.
  • Knowing that the CBD product was made by a supplier that met recognised high standards (32%) and knowing that the contents were not contaminated with pesticides or heavy metals (25%) were the most important priorities when choosing a CBD product – far ahead of knowing that a CBD product was 100% legal (14%), or from where in the world it originated (5%). Support for legalisation of cannabis among CBD users (75%) is higher than that of the total population (47%).

The report presented these key recommendations through these topic areas;

Market sizing – comprehensive economic analysis of CBD market in UK. Product testing – blind testing of 30 major CBD brands available on UK market. A Consumer survey of 2000 members of the public by YouGov, and lastly the CMC’s Policy recommendations – presented to senior officials at the UK Home Office, MHRA, Food Standards Agency and Department of Health and Social Care.

You can read the full report here.

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