Jersey Hemp 'considering taking legal action' against government after export rules change

Credit: ITV Channel

Jersey Hemp is "considering taking legal action" against the UK and Jersey governments following a law that restricts them from exporting their cannabidiol oil (CBD) products to the UK.

While pure CBD products are not controlled substances, anything containing the psychoactive compound THC is.

The Home Office says an import licence is required to bring the drug into the UK, which Jersey Hemp says affects its business. In a statement, the company said: "The directive unfairly singles out Jersey Hemp, excluding them from importing their products into the UK market, while allowing non-licensed CBD products from around the world to freely enter the UK market".

It also said that "If CBD were truly illegal, the UK Home Office would logically ban the import and sale of all CBD products in the UK, rather than singling out Jersey Hemp."

Jersey Hemp has expressed anger that it's CBD products will be under import restrictions

The company statement said it has suffered financially as a result of the directive:

"If this decision is upheld, it would effectively render the entire CBD market in the UK illegal, proving detrimental to Jersey Hemp's viability as a business.

"Consequently, Jersey Hemp has already experienced significant financial repercussions, resulting in a redundancy process impacting over 50% of its staff."

Jersey Hemp was handed a license in 2019 to harvest and grow the hemp flower for use in CBD oil- a decision praised at the time by the then-Economic Development Minister, Lyndon Farnham.

Jersey's Minister for Economic Development, Tourism, Sport and Culture, Deputy Kirsten Morel and Deputy Karen Wilson, Minister for Health and Social Services, say the government will work with those businesses affected.

The Ministers said: "The Government of Jersey remains actively committed to supporting the cannabis cultivation industry and officers within the Department for the Economy, HCS and IE continue to work with the industry to help business navigate the local regulatory and business environment.

"We are aware that Jersey Hemp is in contact with HM Government with respect to exports to the UK.

"As a separate jurisdiction, we cannot comment on those talks and would also not speculate on their outcome.

"Licenses to export cannabis out of Jersey are required under the Misuse of Drugs (Jersey) Law 1978.  These are issued on a shipment-by-shipment basis and would only be issued once the UK has issued its own import license."

Want to find out more about the stories making the headlines? Don't miss Channelcast - the Channel Islands current affairs podcast brought to you by ITV News: