Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ)’s has today issued a circular paving the way for the sale of low-THC hemp seed products as a food.
The regulator has approved a proposal to develop a regulation to allow the sale of products derived from the seeds of low delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) varieties of cannabis sativa.
The decision by FSANZ is a key step toward encouraging ministers to approve of the plant for human consumption, with a decision due to go before the Australia and New Zealand Ministerial Forum on Food Regulation on April 28 when the next Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting is scheduled to take place.
In a circular issued today, FSANZ ruled there was no danger in the human consumption of hemp.
"It is unrealistic to expect that consumption of any low THC hemp seed food or combination of foods containing CBD would result in any consumers reaching the Lowest Oral Human Therapeutic Dose," it said.
Hemp seed – which can be legally consumed overseas – contains vitamin E, phosphorus, thiamine, potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron and zinc. It can be made into flour, protein powders, oil or an alternative to soy milk, and be used like poppy seeds in baking or stir-fries.
The international market for hemp foods is currently estimated at $1bn annually.
P1042 – Low THC Hemp Seeds as Food
The purpose of this Proposal is to permit the addition to food of products from the seeds of low tetrahydrocannabinol varieties of Cannabis sativa.
Approval report – 23 March 2017 (pdf 619 kb) | (word 249 kb)
Submissions (zip file 12949 kb) | Late comments (zip file 567 kb)
Call for submissions – 28 July 2016 (pdf 643 kb) | (word 171 kb)
Administrative Assessment Report –18 May 2016 (pdf 95 kb) | (word 73 kb)