FDA approves hemp-extract usage 


Ms. Supattra Boonserm, the Vice Secretary of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), provided an update on the Ministry of Health’s marijuana-legalization initiative. On 12th January 2021, she announced that cosmetic companies can now use hemp extract in their products.


Hemp to be used in more products


According to Post Today, Ms. Boonserm believes that this policy could increase the economic value of marijuana. The announcement from Thailand’s Ministry of Health and the FDA stated that only hemp extract, which has a lower concentration of active ingredients than marijuana, is permitted. 

The ministry’s statement also pointed out that future programs will allow the usage of marijuana extract in culinary, health, and herbal products. They also plan to extend the policy to include other – stronger – forms of marijuana.


‘Let’s taste it’


Marijuana infused pork broth soup
Marijuana-infused pork bone broth.
Image credit: Aphaiphubet Hospital

Ms. Boonserm also mentioned Aphaiphubet Hospital Day Spa’s restaurant, Ma-Chim-Gun, which means ‘Let’s taste it” in Thai. The menu consists of marijuana-infused items. According to Manager Online, the menu consists of 4 dishes. Options vary from standard Thai dishes to soup bowls and one ganja-infused drink. 

She iterated that the Aphaiphubet Hospital has already received approval from the FDA, and has ensured that the level of marijuana usage is carefully measured for safety and non-addictive consumption. Currently, ‘Ma-Chim-Gun’ is the only official way for the public to purchase and consume marijuana products.


The history and future of marijuana


Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Public Health
Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul, an advocate of ganja legalisation
Image credit: Thai Rath

As of now, Thailand seems to take its steady step towards marijuana legalisation. The plant and its sister breed, hemp, was officially removed from the psychotropic substances list on 5th November 2020. 

Since then, there have been multiple discussions toward the economic value marijuana could add to the market and the possibility of legalisation. The FDA also approved an experimental marijuana planting program in Buriram to test its economic viability.

This hemp announcement is another significant step forward, as it proved that the FDA is interested in the possibility of the plant. If these projects work well with Thailand’s economy, the dream of having marijuana legalisation is not so far from reality after all.

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Featured image adapted from: Thai Rath

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