The French are the most skeptical of CBD whilst their Swiss neighbors are the most engaged, new European research has revealed.
The findings from New Frontier Data found French respondents are least likely to agree that CBD had valid medical uses – at 46% – nine points less than the rest of Europe. They are also the most likely to believe that CBD should only be available with a doctor’s recommendation, at 49%, compared to 36% on the rest of the continent.
Meanwhile, in Switzerland and Austria more than half – 53% – are positive about CBD, compared to 42% of Europeans overall.
Pain Relief and Relaxation
The October 2019 European CBD Survey polled 3,100 respondents from the continent about their attitudes and CBD use. It found that most consumer are using CBD to treat, pain, at 40%, for relaxation at 34%, and to reduce stress and anxiety levels at 31% and 26% respectively.
In relation to CBD usage the French were once again at the bottom with 7% compared to 16% of all Europeans. There is also a marked difference in familiarity with cannabidiol – or CBD – in France at 36% compared to 78% in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
However, this French skepticism towards CBD, and all things cannabis, is currently under attack from two sides. Earlier this year the Government approved the country’s first medical cannabis trial, and the French Parliament looks set to ease restrictions on the CBD wellness market.
In a recent interview with CBD Testers Aurélien Bernard and Benjamin-Alexandre Jeanroy, supporters of the French Medical Cannabis and Wellness Hemp Union, elaborated on the shifting attitudes in France.
CBD: Under The Radar
Mr Bernard said: “Previously CBD was under the radar but we are confident of seeing the creation of acceptable regulations that will allow for the processing and extracting of CBD in France.
“Over the last year there has been a growing interest in cannabis, where previously it has been under the radar, with little recognition. This needs to change that and we are fairly confident that will happen by mid 2020.”
The report’s authors conclude: “France is among the least CBD-friendly markets in the continent; it has the lowest rates of CBD use and purchasing, with the least public awareness and exposure to CBD.
“In general, the French are not only uninterested in CBD, but are the least accepting of its medical applications and availability to consumers. France reported the most negative attitudes toward CBD among any region in Europe.”
Analysts at the Brightfield Group estimate the European CBD market will boom over the next four years. The market was estimated at $318 million in 2018 and is expected to grow over 400 percent through 2023.
For more stories like this one, subscribe to the CBD Business Weekly Newsletter.