A court in France overturned a law that said hemp leaves and flowers were considered narcotics. French laws now follow the European Union’s court decision, which ruled that CBD is not a narcotic and that a member state cannot restrict the free movement of CBD products. Hemp businesses can now use this decision to fight other European countries with different laws around hemp.
In May 2022, four groups (Canapa Sativa Italia, Sardinia Cannabis, Resilienza Italia Onlus, and Federcanapa) filed an appeal to challenge the Ministerial Decree issued in January 2022. The decree required farmers, makers and sellers of hemp to get permission from the Ministry of Health to distribute their products, or they would have to pay a penalty.
The court overruled the decree, stating that each country can only limit the use of plant parts if it is really needed to protect public health and not more than necessary.
France has a chance to benefit economically from allowing its citizens to access previously outlawed CBD products. Farmers can grow a variety of hemp flowers, labs can extract CBD, and brands can have the opportunity to make new “Made in France” products.