The European CBD market is booming, but do consumers really know what's in the products they buy? An online trading platform for cannabis products aims to promote quality and transparency from 'store to shelf'.
The CBX Stock Exchange (CBX) launched on Wednesday and is based in Geneva. This cannabis products fair was founded by a former banker and cannabidiol manufacturer. An earlier version of the platform has been active since 2019 and already claims to have about 4.000 members from more than 80 countries.
Online marketplace for cannabis products
CBX is an online marketplace for buyers and sellers of cannabis products whose safety and quality have been certified by a third-party independent laboratory in Switzerland. It connects cannabis producers active in various industries and offers trade in cannabis flowers, hemp biomass, distillates, isolates and tinctures.
CBX says it has consulted with the Swiss health authority to set standards and partner with a Swiss accredited laboratory specializing in the analysis of cannabis derivatives. This is to certify the quality of goods traded on the platform. “The industry has been operating blindly for too long without the necessary infrastructure, quality controls and guarantees and this needs to change,” said Jonas, co-founder and CEO of CBX.
Recreational use and regulation of cannabis in Europe
The recreational use of cannabis is illegal in most of the European Union, but many countries tolerate the sale of CBD flowers and leaves. Small shops selling CBD products have mushroomed across Europe in recent years and the market is expected to reach €2025 billion by 3,2, according to predictions from cannabis research firm Prohibition Partners.
But the industry boom has sparked controversy. France tried in vain to ban CBD products. In November 2020, the European Court of Justice ruled that CBD should not be considered a narcotic substance under EU law.
As governments struggle to regulate the industry, consumers are given little clear information about the CBD products they buy. A recent study by the Swiss Association of Cantonal Chemists into CBD products found that 85 percent were found to be non-compliant.
Duclos, who has used cannabis for two decades to relieve pain caused by a rare genetic disease, has for years called on EU governments to regulate the industry and set standards for the testing and labeling of CBD products.
Not much has changed since then, so Duclos is now taking matters into his own hands. Before becoming registered members of CBX, applicants must be fully vetted and obtain a special certificate in order to trade on the platform.
That document describes the product's composition, content of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and terpenes – aromatic ingredients – and confirms that it is free from harmful contaminants such as heavy metals, pesticides and bacteria and is safe for human consumption.
The certificate can be obtained by members independently or through the platform's partner, SciTec Research, a lab in Lausanne. CBX says it now has about 300 products online that have all undergone quality checks, while another 700 are being certified.
Read more euronews.com (Source, EN)