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World Anti-Doping Agency removes Cannabidiol from banned substances list

World Anti-Doping Agency removes Cannabidiol from banned substances list

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has announced that it is removing cannabidiol from its list of banned substances in 2018.

Since 2004, and as mandated by World Anti-Doping Code, WADA has published an annual List of Prohibited Substances and Methods (List).The List, which forms one of the five International Standards, identifies the substances and methods prohibited in- and out-of-competition, and in particular sports.   The 2018 List, which was approved by WADA’s Executive Committee on 24 September 2017, comes into force on 1 January 2018.

WADA’s research, through its List Expert Group and Health, Medical and Research Committee, has removed cannabidiol from the banned substances list.  Their conclusion (which can be found here: was, “Cannabidiol is no longer prohibited. Synthetic cannabidiol is not a cannabimimetic; however, cannabidiol extracted from cannabis plants may also contain varying concentrations of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which remains a prohibited substance.”

It is important to note, the new list will go into effect on 1 January 2018, and until then, cannabidiol (CBD) remains prohibited.  It will also be important for athletes to check for any detectable THC levels in CBD products that are derived from Cannabis sativa plants.  Highly purified plant extracts will usually have extremely low levels of THC, however, it is advisable to check with the manufacturing company.