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A historical milestone: Europe authorizes hemp with 0.3% THC

The EU Parliament has just approved to increase the THC content in industrial hemp. The new limit of 0.3% THC is seen as a step in the right direction. The European Hemp Association, or EIHA, has long argued that this small difference of 0.2% to 0.3% THC in hemp was important enough to have a disadvantage in the production and marketing of industrial hemp.



The Parliament of the European Union approved, in a vote, to increase the THC amount allowed for industrial hemp “in the field” from 0.2% to 0.3%. In that way, the European Union puts a limit of THC to the hemp cultivated in Europe more in line with the majority of countries such as the USA or Canada.

The proposal was always strongly defended by the European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA) and was included in the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) approved by Parliament last Friday, October 23rd. The Director General of EIHA, Lorenza Romanese, was the one who announced the news on her Linkedin profile.

On the other hand, EIHA President Daniel Kruse said. “This is a historic moment for our industry, for our farmers, for a green future and for all Europeans.”Finally, the EU is back on an equal footing with the global hemp industry.”

Read more details about the increase in the THC amount in industrial hemp, the European Union Parliamentary just approved, and find the most important hemp news with the mobile app.

European Council and the European Commission

Now that the proposal was approved by the European Parliament, it will have to also be approved by the Council and the European Commission which are part of the process of adopting standards in the European Union.

In addition, the European parliamentarians also included hemp in the list of agricultural products, which will allow its regulation by means of rules of commercialization. The aim of these rules is to ensure the quality of products by improving the economic conditions for the production and marketing of agricultural products. The rules include standards on issues such as technical definitions, packaging and labelling, the substances and methods used in production, type and location of cultivation, as well as issues related to the hemp value chain.

The limits of THC amount in hemp in the European Union

In the European Union, the first time the limit of tetrahydrocannabinol or THC for industrial hemp was established in 1984 and it was 0.5%. Later, following a standard established by the International Association of Plant Taxonomy (LAPT) in 1970, and based on the work of American researchers, the limit was set at 0.3%. This limit would be the one that would delimit hemp from cannabis.

At the end of the last century, in 1999, the E.U. still lowered that number to 0.2% in a mistaken attempt and with the aim of preventing the growth of cannabis among industrial hemp.

Competitors of the European Union in the production of hemp

Hemp cultivation and production around the world is booming. With this small but important increase of the THC limit in the cultivation of hemp, the European Union will be able to compare to its two important competitors: China and the USA.

A very similar limit, but a competitive barrier

The European Hemp Association, or EIHA, has long argued that this small difference of 0.2% to 0.3% THC in hemp was important enough to have a disadvantage in the production and marketing of industrial hemp. Moreover, on the other hand, the limit of security risk in cultivated hemp, of a hundredth of THC, does not carry a remarkable effect in the security in the production of illicit cannabis. In fact, several studies that thus credited it accompanied the argumentative one of the EIHA.

The European Union was suffering a commercial disadvantage with its competitors for this reason. The European Parliament voted in favor of raising the limit, which will make the advantage in international markets disappear.

The 0.3% THC limit on industrial hemp is the one adopted by virtually all nations. With this movement made by the EU, the producers and cultivators of cannabis in Europe will be able to compete more with cannabis producers on other continents. The previous limit of 0.2% was always an obstacle for the European producers of CBD. The increase of the CBD amount is proportionally bound to that of the THC and prevents the use of certain varieties of hemp with high yields of seeds, which exceed 0,2% of THC.


(Featured image by TinaKru via Pixabay)

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Helene Lindbergh is a published author with books about entrepreneurship and investing for dummies. An advocate for financial literacy, she is also a sought-after keynote speaker for female empowerment. Her special focus is on small, independent businesses who eventually achieve financial independence. Helene is currently working on two projects—a bio compilation of women braving the world of banking, finance, crypto, tech, and AI, as well as a paper on gendered contributions in the rapidly growing healthcare market, specifically medicinal cannabis.