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The Remarkable Turn Up of CBD in South Africa

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The Remarkable Turn Up of CBD in South Africa

CBD is known to treat anxiety, epilepsy, muscle pains, insomnia, arthritis, and menstrual cramps with notable effects on all counts. It is used as a powerful agent against acne and skin inflammations. These are few claims with some scientific evidence to back them up. If circumstantial proof can be used, CBD can do much more.

The effects of CBD are still being investigated, in part because extensive use of the substance is uncommon outside of epilepsy treatment, making this a new field. The pervasive use of the substance came in the wake of the recent movement towards cannabis legalization that has spread all over the world in recent years.

In South Africa, cannabis production, and distribution is thriving over the past years. South Africa’s natural climate, easy access to resources, and impeccable skills availability makes the local cannabis production an appealing prospect to the government for jobs, tax revenue, and the improvement of their legal frameworks and law enforcement responsibilities.

The cultivation, production, and manufacturing of Cannabis products are restricted for medicinal uses only. South Africa’s government wants to lessen the risk of Cannabis diversion and reserves its usage for medical and scientific purposes only with the help of the International Narcotics Drug Control Board.

In May 2019, South Africa is the first in Africa region that has state-approved for non-prescription CBD.  The Minister of Health in South Africa principally signed new regulation authorizing the sale and supply of low dose CBD products to the South African public which has inevitably also sparked the conversation about South Africa’s progress toward fully legalizing the highly profitable cannabis industry.

Recently, CBD was considered a scheduled substance with regard to the schedules of the Medicines Act. This meant that products that contained CBD and intended for therapeutic purposes could only be sold by pharmacists to consumers who held a prescription.

This view was revealed by the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) in the media. SAHPRA has lately issued recommendations regarding the cultivation of Cannabis and in an effort order to guarantee the availability of quality-assured locally grown Cannabis, entirely for medical, scientific, and clinical research purposes. In May last year, products that include a maximum daily dose of 20mg of CBD and are for health supplement or relief are free from the operation of the schedules to the Medicines Act.

That is to say, CBD products which have less than 20mg for a daily dose will be considered ‘over the counter products’ and maybe sold openly in pharmacies, wellness stores, and other outlets. On the other hand, products that have a daily dose of more than 20mg of CBD will still be considered a scheduled substance in schedule 4 of the Medicines Act and would need a prescription in order to be sold. It is likely to note that the South African regulator and the Department of Health have reflected the benefits and risks of cannabinoid-containing products, and with a view to allowing marketing access for medical use purposes. The moratorium signed by the Minister of Health was valid for 12 months and expired last May.

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