Wednesday, January 26, 2022

The CBD industry is preparing its legal response

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It didn’t take long. The day after the ban on CBD flowers, the sector seized the Council of State, the highest administrative court, with an interim relief. This emergency procedure makes it possible to quickly suspend a text that jeopardizes freedoms. In this case, the CBD sector complains of an obstacle to the freedom to undertake, since flowers represent more than half of sales.

“We spent our New Years Eve there on December 31, then we lodged our appeal with the Council of State on January 1. It was well registered on January 3, and was not rejected. So we hope that the judge will rule this week “, says Yann Bisiou. This teacher-researcher, specialist in drug law, is also a legal consultant to the Union des Professionals du CBD (UPCBD).

“Flowers represent 70% of the turnover of our stores. So we can fear layoffs, closures … All this, in addition to the criminal risk for traders, and the stock that they can no longer sell “, alarmed Charles Moral, president of the UPCBD.

They can also count on the political support of Julien Bayou. The president of the Europe-Ecology-Les Verts (EELV) party is also a lawyer. And so he worked on this summary-freedom.

“Are we banning tobacco? “

Further legal attacks will follow. “The authorities say you cannot differentiate CBD hemp from THC. Of course it’s possible ! Except that we do not give ourselves the means. There are quick tests to differentiate CBD / THC. So that will be one of the many arguments that will be held ”, announces Aurélien Delecroix. The president of the Professional Hemp Trade Union (SPC) is therefore also preparing an interim relief before the Council of State.

He will highlight the government’s contradictions. Indeed, the executive recalls that “Many carcinogenic elements come from the combustion of organic substances”, when consumers smoke the CBD flowers. “Certainly the products can be smoked, but do we ban tobacco for all that?, responds Delecroix. In Belgium and Luxembourg, CBD flowers are classified as a smoking plant, like tobacco. Everything is standardized: there is taxation, a health message, a ban on sale to minors, etc. “

For the Council of State to suspend the decree, it is necessary to prove the economic emergency. And this is especially the case for farmers. “The flower represents 80 to 85% of our sales. The impact is radical. Are companies going to resist this? No, it is improbable. We could not quantify the total, but at least 80% of our 280 members want to give up ”, alert François-Guillaume Piotrowski, the president of the Association of French Cannabinoid Producers (AFPC).

He too will file an appeal with justice. But before that, he hopes that the Constitutional Council will prove him right. His association seized the guarantor of the Constitution, hoping to be able to have the decree annulled. The answer should arrive this Friday, January 7.

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