21 Jul Cannabis Trades Association Receives Official Endorsement From the MHRA.
For nearly two years the Cannabis Trades Association (CTA) has been working with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the Food Standards Agency (FSA), the Home Office, Trading Standards and other UK authorities to bring order and professional standards to the growing market in legal cannabis and CBD products.
The MHRA has now officially recognised CTA by inclusion in its Guidance Note 8 ‘A guide to what is a medicinal product’.
This is long overdue recognition for the CTA’s work which includes regular liaison with the authorities, providing guidance to businesses operating within the market on the law, regulations, professional and quality standards. The CTA with the MHRA and FSA is also in the process of developing the Cannabis Products Directive (CPD), a framework for regulation and licensing of all cannabis and cannabinoid products. CPD has been translated and submitted to all 28 member states of the EU by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA). It is anticipated that CPD will become UK law within the next two years and will relieve the Home Office of the burden of the cannabis regulation and licensing process, placing it in expert hands.
The CTA was initially conceived at a meeting in Manchester Airport in September 2016. In November 2016, with the assistance of Crispin Blunt MP, then a member of the CLEAR Advisory Board, it was invited to an initial meeting with the MHRA to represent the emerging CBD industry. The market for legal, low-THC cannabis products derived from industrial hemp had grown rapidly within just a few months but was becoming out of control with a multitude of new companies making unlawful medical claims for their products, which themselves were totally unregulated and of inconsistent quality and unknown provenance.
Through negotiation and a growing relationship with the authorities, CTA was instrumental in bringing the market back from the brink of a serious clampdown. Now, with over 300 full members and more than 1200 registered sellers, CTA encompasses not just CBD suppliers but also licensed growers and producers of cannabis and businesses involved in the long term development of cannabis products.
CTA is closely involved in the rapidly developing reform of the laws around medical use of cannabis and will be working with the authorities to manage development of the products and systems required for what is expected to be a huge new market.