Hemp Oil Entry Deleted from the EU Feed Materials Catalog

Hemp oil entry is deleted from the European catalog of feed materials, while hemp seed oil and hemp silage definitions are included. The Catalogue now also includes an entry for hemp products derived from any part of the plant except the flowering tops.

The European Commission’s Standing Committee on Plants, Animals, Food and Feed (SCOPAFF), representing EU governments and public authorities has discussed the entries in the European catalog of feed materials. As a result, the entries have been updated.

As reported by the EIHA in their newsletter, the Member States decided to take a precautionary approach in particular with regards to hemp oil, to avoid the marketing of feed materials with a possible functional effect. Hence, all products issued from flowering tops, flowers, buds, and blossoms are excluded from the Catalogue.

The placing on the market and use of feed is regulated at the EU level by regulation 767/2009. This regulation establishes the Catalogue as a tool to improve the labeling of feed materials and compound feed. It is meant to facilitate the exchange of information on the product properties and list feed materials in a non-exhaustive manner. The use of the Catalogue by the feed business operators is voluntary. However, the name of a feed material listed in the Catalogue may be used only on the condition that all relevant provisions of the Catalogue are complied with.

The newly included entry for hemp products derived from any part of the plant except the flowering tops is very general and broad, the EIHA concludes. The comparative table of the entries before and after the changes can be found here.

The topic will be further discussed in the Working Group on food and food supplements on October 7th.

Hemp webpage

Also, hemp now has its page on the European Commission’s website, which EIHA greets as another step towards the full normalization of the plant as an agricultural crop in Europe and higher visibility for the sector.

According to the European Commission, the area dedicated to hemp cultivation has increased significantly in the EU from 19,970 hectares (ha) in 2015 to 34,960 ha in 2019 (a 75% increase). In the same period, the production increased from 94,120 tonnes to 152,820 tonnes (a 62.4% increase). France is the largest producer, accounting for more than 70% of EU production, followed by the Netherlands (10%) and Austria (4%).

Considering the growing interest in hemp fiber, the Commission will propose a comprehensive EU strategy for sustainable textiles aiming to create a more sustainable, innovative, circular economic model.

Furthermore, on its new webpage, the Commission states that only de-hulled seeds serve as food for human consumption, while whole seeds should be used as feed for animals.

Improving energy efficiency in the building sector will play a key role in achieving carbon-neutrality by 2050, a goal set out in the European Green Deal. Hemp can play a significant role in reaching this objective, states the Commission.

Hemp could be used to produce paper, acknowledges the Commission. There are multiple advantages to using hemp fiber to make paper: hemp stalks only take up to five months to mature, the paper does not necessarily require toxic bleaching chemicals and it can be recycled seven to eight times.

As for CBD products, the Commission places them in the ‘Other uses’ section, recognizing the interest in production and marketing due to its multiple uses in cosmetics, health, and food. The Commission recognizes the decision of the Court of Justice of the European Union, which determined that the marketing of legally produced CBD is permitted under EU law.

Reviewed by Sasha Bajilo, founder of ILESOL Pharmaceuticals, an industrial scale producer of CBD products and formulations. Expert on Hemp/Cannabis policy, member of the Croatian Ministry of Health regulatory commission for medical cannabis.