South Africa declassifies cannabis and reclassifies CBD and THC


South Africa decided to remove the cannabis plant from the list of controlled substances, but classified CBD and THC so as to allow their use under certain conditions.

The country has also exempted industrial hemp from medical controls, but has set the THC level in the plant at 0.2%, and in finished products at 0.001%, thereby reducing the possibilities of use.


CBD considered a food supplement and a drug

CBD is considered both a food supplement and a medicine. It is placed in Annex 4 of the list of controlled substances, requiring a prescription, except when it is presented in packages containing 600 mg or less of CBD and limited to a maximum dose of 20 mg / day, where it is then regulated. in addition to Annex 0.

The Schedule includes many over-the-counter medications such as aspirin and supplements such as vitamins. However, this classification means that only products manufactured in accordance with GMP standards will be authorized, and only when producers are registered as manufacturers of medicines and the products themselves are registered with the South African Health Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA).


THC and industrial hemp

The classification of THC in Annex 4 opens the doors to a medical cannabis industry in South Africa.

The cannabis plant was removed from Annex 7, reserved for strictly controlled substances, to quickly fall under the aegis of the Ministry of Agriculture.

It thus exempts industrial hemp from a classification, but fixes the limit of this exemption at 0.2%, a very low limit which corresponds more to a European climate than to the South African climate. Malawi, for example,set its limit at 1% THC to take advantage of local varieties and allow a hemp industry.

Processed products, on the other hand, will have a THC limit set at only 0.001%, whether for fiber or food.

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