SA’s first cannabis pizza is launched – and it’s perfectly safe

You got the munchies? Try a Green Goddess

The Boardwalk’s Col’Cacchio restaurant chef Nkosinathi Mokoena with two cannabis pizzas
The Boardwalk’s Col’Cacchio restaurant chef Nkosinathi Mokoena with two cannabis pizzas
Image: Fredlin Adriaan

Some weed with that?

This could be the common call in restaurants in the near future, according to the creators of the country’s first cannabis pizza range, who launched their highly anticipated product on Tuesday.

Italian-inspired restaurant franchise group Col’Cacchio, together with africanpure, one of Africa’s leading cannabidiol (CBD) brands, has introduced two gourmet cannabis pizzas to menus across most of the group’s 37 restaurants – the “Green Goddess” and the “Not-So-Plain Mary Jane” at R125 and R140 respectively.

The two pizzas, which are available at Col’Cacchio at the Boardwalk in Port Elizabeth, will be drizzled with africanpure CBD oil, which contains no tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or synthetic chemicals, making it safe to enjoy.

Customers will also be able to add CBD oil to any other dish on the menu at an additional cost of R25.

Africanpure’s co-founder, Mike Saunders, said unlike THC, CBD does not have psychoactive properties, meaning it cannot get you high.

He said africanpure’s hemp-derived products contained no THC and were combined with essential oils.

“No matter how much of the cannabis pizza you eat, you won’t get high so it’s safe for all ages to enjoy,” Saunders said.

“What you will feel is relaxed, calm and even more focused.

“The idea was actually Col’Cacchio’s who contacted us and said they were interested in working with us, about three months ago.

“And in terms of the future, this product is barely scratching the surface of what’s to come in terms of partnership between CBD and food, as both have proven health benefits and infusing the two enhances the health and mental benefits both possess.”

Saunders said the pizza was oven-cooked and, once removed, was sprayed with about 20mg of the CBD oil, the maximum daily dosage allowed as per the Government Gazette of May 23.

“CBD can be infused in most dishes and is sure to inspire many other dishes in the nottoo-distant future, which can be foretold by the amount of licences being applied for to produce the product.

“And Col’Cacchio [is] already looking to expand their cannabis menu.”

Col’Cacchio co-founder Kinga Baranowska, who has more than 25 years in the catering industry, said he expected cannabis to be expanded across a variety of markets.

“At Col’Cacchio, we have always aimed to be innovative with our menu, offering and providing our loyal fan base with the latest health-positive trends,” Baranowska said.

“We love to stay ahead of the curve and are extremely proud to be the first restaurant in SA to launch a cannabis pizza and look forward to seeing old and new faces in our restaurants coming in to try this exciting new range.”

While it is fine for you to buy a pizza, if you buy four, then you are consuming 80mg, which is technically illegal
Ricky Stone, attorney

But attorney Ricky Stone, who specialises in legislation pertaining to cannabis cases, said the food industry needed to be careful it did not overstep the boundaries while establishing the growing CBD market.

“There is still a lot of unknowns in this relatively new area . . . for example, while the sale of CBD is not illegal, it is limited to daily usage of 20mg.

“So while it is fine for you to buy a pizza, if you buy four, then you are consuming 80mg, which is technically illegal.

“Hence why one anticipates that the government is using this 12-month exemption from CBD to research the product and put in place good controls,” Stone said.

“I believe this is necessary as this industry will continue to grow and it is encouraging and good to see people starting the debate around CBD.”

The cannabis pizzas will be available at all Col’Cacchio restaurants, except its Windhoek and halaal outlets.