CBD Approved For OTC Use But Faces Many Hurdles

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Communicated Content – Even though CBD has been cleared to be sold locally over-the-counter in Australia, there are some hurdles that need to be cleared before you can actually acquire it at a pharmacy. Some experts suggest it may takes months or even years, before you can actually get it at your local pharmacy.


What to know about the rules for consuming CBD ?

When Prof Iain McGregor was asked to discuss the rules surrounding CBD consumption in Australia, he stated that “one can drink as much whiskey as they desire. However, whiskey is nowhere to be found”. As it stands, the only CBD product that you can acquire right now is Epidiolex which is used to treat childhood epilepsy. As such when it comes to getting CBD in Australia, your only options are to purchase it online. CBD or cannabidiol as it’s commonly called, is an active compound in the marijuana plant. However, unlike THC, CBD does not give psychoactive effects upon consumption. On February 1,2020 new guidelines were introduced that made it legal for adults to acquire CBD over the counter.


The status of CBD in Australia

This occurred due to the fact that the Therapeutic Goods Administration downgraded it from being a Schedule 4 drug which requires prescription, to a Schedule 3 drug which means ” pharmacist only medicine “. The Administration made this decision after reviewing a study which concluded on December 15, 2020 that demonstrated that individuals were not at risk of experiencing adverse events from CBD consumption.

However, even though one would assume that they could immediately go to the local pharmacy and get CBD in Australia, that simply isn’t the case. Even though it has been cleared to be used legally by adults without a prescription, as it stands, no product has been approved to be sold by the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods.

This is primarily due to the fact the status of CBD in Australia is significantly different from that of other countries where it is available such as the United States and United Kingdom, where it is classified as being a dietary supplement as opposed to a medicine. As Assoc, Prof Yvonne Bonomo explains, in Australia it is viewed as being a type of medicine, not a supplement. As such, like any other medicine, it has to make its way through many hurdles before it’s made widely available. Therefore, just like how a pharmaceutical company has various hurdles they have to go through to sell their product to the general population, companies who wish to sell CBD locally will have to go through different pathways before they can make their product available. He explains that in order for a product to be listed, it has to go through a complex process which places an emphasis on quality control.

Tommy Huppert, a CEO for a large Australian cannabis grower explains that, the industry is attempting to fill in the gap of over 70 years of prohibition which limited their ability to conduct studies to demonstrate the benefits that CBD has over. Huppert also explained that since there’s an abundance of health claims about the benefits of cannabidiol, since it is listed as a medicine in Australia, the challenge that manufacturers face is that they have to conduct clinical trials to prove the purported benefits a given manufacturer may claim. He also highlighted the fact that this process can take years as well as millions of dollars, a significant hurdle for small and large growers alike. Experts also suggest that once residents are able to purchase it locally, they may get turned off by the price. A 300mg dose of CBD oil which as been TGA approved could cost as much as $40 which is good enough for two days use.

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