According to a new report, the demand for CBD in the UK has hit unprecedented highs over the past 12 months. 

The ‘Green Shoots’ revealed that this sector has generated around £690m in sales between April 2020 and April 2021. The Association for the Cannabinoid Industry (ACI) and Centre for Medicinal Cannabis (CMC) launched this report.

These organisations are claiming that this is a sector that is now too big to ignore, with current cultivation methods resulting in profits being minimised for affected farmers.

According to the report, domestic restrictions on hemp cultivation and processing in the UK, are resulting in profits being pushed overseas. This is due to UK farmers being told to destroy parts of the crop which CBD is extracted from.

Paul Birch, Co-Founder of the CMC and ACI, said: “The size of this cannabinoid sector is now impossible to ignore. Today’s report reveals that sales of CBD products up to the year end of April 2021 are valued at £690m, almost a third higher than our last projection in 2019. Almost without notice and certainly by accident rather than design, the UK has improbably become the world’s second largest consumer cannabinoids market.”

This is a view reflected by Steve Moore, the Co-Founder and Strategic Counsel to the CMC and ACI. 

He added: “With new government support the accidental consumer cannabis revolution that has allowed CBD to become available on every high street in the UK could become permanent, nurturing hundreds of new businesses, thousands of jobs and billions of pounds in exports. It’s hard to imagine there many more industries that could benefit almost immediately from the proposals set out in our report.”

The groups are calling for immediate government reforms, with their report making 20 suggestions. These include a dedicated agency to licence and oversee the industry, a new centre of excellence, and urgent reform of licensing policy.