A WOMAN who has opened a café selling cannabis plant products is making a plea for people not to report her new business to the authorities.

Rebecca Allan, from Witton Gilbert, near Durham, launched her CBD Café and desserts parlour Treats2Go last week after becoming interested in cannabidiol (CBD) products when she was advised to use them after being involved in a car crash while heavily pregnant.

Since opening last week she has been visited by a number of authorities, including licensing and police officers, who told her a complaint had been lodged about the business.

She said: "After my fourth visit from different authorities I thought it would be helpful to raise awareness around it.

"I think there's some confusion as to what CBD is and there's concern over whether we're a pot shop and whether people are going to be in here getting high. That's not what we are at all. It couldn't be further from that."

The Northern Echo:

Some of the CBD products available in the cafe in Sunderland Road, Gilesgate

Alongside selling tea, coffee and snacks in the cafe in Gilesgate, Durham, the mum-of-two stocks a range a CBD-based products, which are derived from the cannabis plant but does not cause psychoactive effects because it is low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the part which causes a high.

It is not licensed – but to be legal must have less than 0.2 per cent THC.

CBD oils and other products are available on the high street, including at Holland and Barrett and Sainsbury's, which started selling a water containing CBD last year.

Proponents say it has medical benefits, though the NHS warns there is no guarantee that CBD products are good quality and says it is not clear what effect they have.

Ms Allan started using CBD oil after being involved in a car crash last June, when she was 38 weeks pregnant.

The smash, which happened when a van drove into the back of her stationary car, left her struggling with pain and mobility problems.

She said: "I was limited with what I could take. It was my physio who suggest looking into it.

"I was in so much pain and I felt happier with taking CBD than the opiate based stuff I was being offered. It's helped me massively."

While on on maternity leave from her job as a network engineer with the NHS, she decided to set up her own business selling desserts.

She added: "I was selling tray bakes and it seemed like the next step. CBD is a hobby. It's something I believe in. I want to make it available to more people and educate people about it."