Hemp-stead? Cannabis oil shop boss sanguine over possible new EU rules
PUBLISHED: 12:00 30 January 2019 | UPDATED: 14:37 30 January 2019
The owner of a brand new Hampstead cannabinoid (CBD) shop says he isn't worried by rumours the product could be pulled from shelves within months thanks to its reclassification as "novel food".
Andy Logan already runs the Vape Emporium in Heath Street, and the new CBD & You business – opened last month – is directly above it.
CBD, also known as cannabis oil, comes from the hemp plant. Despite the name, it doesn’t have the higher levels of banned chemical THC that are present in the cannabis drug, so it’s legal.
But a report in the national press on Tuesday claimed the EU had amended its food regulations, terming CBD a “novel food”.
That is said to mean the shelves could be stripped bare within weeks until it can go through a new approval process that could take 18 months. However, Andy says it’s business as usual.
“We’ve not heard from anybody, and I think it might be being overblown,” he said.
“I’d welcome regulation, because it means customers can trust us even more.”
Andy’s ties to the area run deep: he grew up in Hampstead, and one-time Ham&High owner Arthur Goss, who ran the paper in the 1950s, was his stepdad’s grandfather.
He now lives in West Hampstead, but reckons the village is the prime location for his new venture.
The 40-year-old said: “The response has been positive so far. It’s genuinely exciting that the shop has opened.”
He got the idea from his supplier in America, who told him CBD liquids were becoming popular in San Francisco.
According to a study by the European Journal of Pain, CBD applied on the skin could help lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis.Andy claimed the oil aided his sleep and even a recurrent tennis elbow problem when he tried it himself.
After initial success, Andy – alongside business partners Amar El-Zayat and Adam Blake – decided to move the existing Vape Emporium downstairs into their former staff room, and open the CBD shop on the ground floor in its place.
“We’ve got some sofas, and consulting rooms where people can have a chat about what they want,” said Andy.
“We want people to be well informed about what they’re buying.”