The DEA considers cannabidiol (CBD) a Schedule I drug - just like heroin. In England? It's rightfully considered medicine.
The new ruling in Britain, courtesy Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), was based on credible claims that CBD successfully treats serious diseases - and mean that CBD can legally be distributed across the UK.
“We have come to the opinion that products containing cannabidiol (CBD) used for medical purposes are a medicine,” said an MHRA spokesperson on the agency’s website. “MHRA will now work with individual companies and trade bodies in relation to making sure products containing CBD, used for a medical purpose, which can be classified as medicines, satisfy the legal requirements of the Human Medicines Regulations 2012.”
As Gerald Heddell, director of inspection and enforcement at MHRA, told Sky News: “The change really came about with us offering an opinion that CBD is in fact a medicine, and that opinion was based on the fact that we noted that people were making some quite stark claims about serious diseases that could be treated with CBD.”
There's still room for growth - the United Kingdom does not recognized marijuana as being a medically beneficial product, for instance - this new classification is a huge step in the right direction.
So what it would take in the United States? It's hard to say - especially given that we have the same information here as what's available across the pond.
Maybe some greater transparency in campaign funding would be a place to start, though, given that lobbyists are mostly responsible for the way marijuana is currently regulated.