In May of 2019, the regulations surrounding the popular cannabinoid CBD were changed. These made allowances for the sale of CBD products with certain restrictions in place, such as a maximum daily dose of 20mg and a limit on THC content.
However, this was just for a 12 month period which would allow the necessary powers to observe the budding industry and allow for space to make any necessary changes before finalising the amendments. The starting date of this 12 month period was the 15th of May 2019, which meant that the same date of 2020 would be the end of the allowances made for CBD.
CBD Industry Left in the Dark
The 15th of May 2020 came and went, with many still preoccupied with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. No official statements were made by the government and it had almost felt like they had completely forgotten, letting CBD fall to the wayside and essentially be re-classified as illegal to sell or consume.
Much to the relief of the local cannabis and CBD community, not all was forgotten. An update was given on the CBD scheduling on the 22nd of May in a Government Gazette, outlining some new regulations for this compound.
The Updated CBD Regulations
CBD will no longer be classed as a Schedule 4 drug! It’s likely that it will fall under another lower schedule, but this has not yet been elaborated on.
The other significant update was an adjustment to the amount of CBD allowed in any product. In 2019, not much was said on this matter which meant that products could contain up to 2000mg of CBD in their entirety, as long as they still fit in the regulations of a 20mg daily dose and no more than 0.0075% total CBD. This has all changed though as the new maximum legal amount of CBD in any product is 600mg.
Other than these changes, the initial amendments from 2019 remain. All in all, these are minor adjustments and are not likely to negatively impact the CBD market or industry.
Although some members of the community have shown their concern in their belief that this is a step backwards. Some believe that the initial limitations were too harsh and that allowing for greater amounts of CBD would be beneficial to the consumers, in certain circumstances. Now limiting CBD products to just 600mg, some won’t benefit from this cannabinoid how they could with a higher dose.
Not everyone will be happy with the updated regulations, but these amendments still have a lot of positivity to them. These changes show that the government may be listening and thinking carefully about cannabis in South Africa, hoping to create a fair and efficient platform for the industry.