The world’s attention has been on cannabis for the past year or two. A controversial plant, hemp, a variety of cannabis that doesn’t get you high, had been outlawed in most territories until recently. This can be traced back to cannabidiol, a hemp extract flush with potent medicinal properties that has captured the world by storm.
Although most of the medical claims haven’t been clinically tried and proven yet, users swear by CBD, saying it’s effective against everything from anxiety and chronic pain to insomnia and high blood pressure. Cannabidiol’s biggest draw, perhaps, is that it offers consumers a versatile natural alternative to pharmaceuticals, and is devoid of the side effects they are known for.
With so much to offer, the market for CBD can only be expected to grow. The Brightfield Group, a leading market intelligence firm for the legal CBD and cannabis industries, recently published Europe’s first-ever predictive CBD data, and it painted a hopeful picture for CBD companies operating in the EU.
According to the group, the European CBD market will boom over the next four years. It was valued at $318 million in 2018, and it’s expected to grow at a rate of 409% through 2023.
A survey by New Frontier Data dubbed the EU CBD Consumer Report 2019 Overview found that 46% of Europeans view CBD favorably, with 77% believing that CBD products should be made accessible in some way.
“CBD is just starting to take hold in Europe, with both product availability and consumer awareness still quite limited. This is a great opportunity for developed brands to enter and expand throughout Europe with far less competition than we’re seeing in the U.S.,” says Brightfield Managing Director Bethany Gomez.
“With the Novel Foods Act, it is a challenging legal environment to operate in, but impending regulatory changes are likely to smooth the way for significant long term growth.”
A novel food is defined as a food that hasn’t been consumed to a significant degree by people in the EU or is produced using means not used for food prior to 15 May 1997. Novel foods have to be evaluated and authorized before being allowed on the shelves.
The report from the Brightfield Group also found that the UK and Austria are Europe’s largest CBD markets, with each of them making $80 million in 2018. Although the UK is expected to remain a market leader over the medium term, Germany is projected to outpace most European countries.
Seeing this bullish outlook for CBD in Europe, one would be forgiven for thinking that established CBD firms in North America, such as SinglePoint Inc. (OTCQB: SING), could be thinking of ways to get a foothold in the vast EU market so as to consolidate their industry dominance.
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