European food safety authorities have come to the conclusion that the milk from cows fed with cannabis seeds is safe to drink.
On June 26, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) published its opinion regarding the safety of hemp–a variety of cannabis that contains very low levels of the active chemical tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)–as animal feed.
They concluded that exposure to this amount of THC, through consumption of milk and dairy products, was not likely to pose a health risk.
EFSA also did a research on the risk of consuming the meat and eggs from these animals, but stated that they were unable to come to any conclusions due to “lack of data”.
Hemp can be legally cultivated in the EU as long as its THC content doesn’t exceed 0.2%. The seeds are used to replace oilseed meals in the diets of pigs, cows and horses.
A less common practice, according to the EFSA, is the use of the leaves, flowers and stalks of hemp plants for feeding of ruminants and pigs.
EFSA noted that the risk assessment “did not evaluate the exposure and associated risks of cannabis used as a medicinal drug or for recreational purposes”, but addressed “the potential risks caused through human dietary exposure from food of animal origin”.