Is CBD legal

Is CBD oil legal in my country?

Hemp & CBD Products Hempika
Don't be in doubt, check out all about the legal status of CBD around the world.

CBD oil law and regulations for medical and recreational use of hemp and cannabis are constantly changing in most countries around the world. As the medical potential of both species of the plant increases most countries have already reduced the legal restrictions on cultivation, production, distribution, sales, classification and taxation on hemp and cannabis and its derived products.

Legality of CBD

The difference between Cannabis and Industrial Hemp

To understand the legal status of hemp and cannabis and products derived from them we must first know the difference between hemp and cannabis itself and CBD-based products, Hemp-based products and Cannabis-derived products:

  • Cannabis or Cannabis Sativa – is a plant indigenous to and originating from Central and upper South Asia. Three species are recognized: Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis although due to constant natural and human-based cross-breeding of species, they rarely appear in their original form. Total THC levels in today’s Cannabis Sativa strains are usually very high – up to 30%.
  • Hemp, or industrial hemp – are registered strains of the Cannabis Sativa plant subspecies that are grown for a variety of industrial and commercial uses. Hemp can be used for extraction of cannabinoids and can be refined into a variety of commercial products that don’t contain cannabinoids. Total THC levels in industrial hemp are usually very low – up to 1%
  • CBD-based products – are products that contain different concentrations of CBD or Cannabidiol – a non-psychoactive cannabinoid present in all Cannabis Sativa strains including Hemp. We must underline that the CBD used can be of full spectrum or crystals(Isolate).
    Full-spectrum CBD (along with other 140+ cannabinoids) is usually extracted from registered Hemp strains but can be also extracted from all other subspecies of Cannabis Sativa. In order to maintain the THC concentrations below the legally allowed limits, the extract is usually further elaborated. Here at Hempika®, we focus on full-spectrum CBD-based products. CBD Crystals or CBD Isolate begins as hemp-derived CBD extract. Then, all other plants natural cannabinoids and other compounds except for CBD are removed, leaving CBD as a pure crystalline, making CBD legal for sales also in countries where THC concentration is limited to 0.0%.
  • Hemp-based products – are products made from industrial hemp and do not contain cannabinoids. With the reintroduction of hemp in western society – industries we can observe a boom of new hemp-based products such as paper, textiles, clothing, biodegradable plastics, animal feed, insulation, construction material, biofuel, food…
  • Cannabis-derived products – are products made from Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Sativa plant parts usually containing elevated concentrations of THC.

Our CBD map helps our user to quickly identify the legality of CBD products in different countries. It can be helpful when you need in-depth information about the CBD law and regulations regarding also the legal status of THC and its allowed limit in hemp and CBD-based products. You can access this information by simply clicking on a pin marked on the country map. We strongly advise you to do detailed research on the latest laws and regulations regarding CBD and THC before travelling to another country and we wouldn’t advise you to bring any CBD based products on a plane, even if the THC content is below 0,2%. Instead, we advise you to order beforehand your preferred CBD products to your designated location.

Map interpretation:

  • CBD – Indicates where can you legally buy CBD-based products
  • Hemp – Indicates where can you legally buy Hemp-based products
  • THC limit (%) – Indicates the legal maximum THC concentration in products on the market (positive values apply to countries where THC is decriminalized or legalized)
  • Cannabis – Indicates where can you buy Cannabis for recreational purposes
  • Medical – Indicates where you can get a prescription for Cannabis derived products

Hemp seed oil and CBD oil classification

Hemp seed oil – Hemp seed oil doesn’t contain cannabinoids and it has been available on the EU market to a significant degree prior to May 15, 1997, so it can be classified as food.

CBD oil – was not available on the EU market to a significant degree prior to May 15, 1997, so it can not be classified as food. Depending on the country, CBD-based products can be classified as a novel food, but government authorisation may be required when the oil is subjected to certain forms of extraction or purification techniques. The European Commission’s Working Group of novel Foods states regarding CBD, “…extracts of Cannabis sativa L and derived products containing cannabinoid are considered novel foods as a history of consumption has not been demonstrated.”

Cannabidiol is listed in the EU Cosmetics Ingredient Database and in some countries, CBD-based products for topical use can be sold as cosmetics. Furthermore, today you can acquire CBD-based products that are classified as prescription medications, but only in some countries (last row in the table) and only with a medical prescription. Although a lot of medical studies and clinical trials popping up all around the world in the last years shown the positive effects of CBD when prescribed for various health problems, most countries do not classify CBD as medication, but instead as an active ingredient and as such it can be substance to strict country regulations. We could say that the classification of CBD varies widely from country to country and it depends a lot on the local laws and regulations regarding hemp and cannabis.

Hemp-derived CBD extracts and cannabis-derived CBD extracts

CBD can be found in hemp or in cannabis plants. Use and sale of hemp-derived CBD is legal in most countries, but cannabis-derived CBD is not, because the cultivation of cannabis is illegal or restricted only to licence owners in most countries.

Hemp-derived CBD extract usually contains small traces of THC (the legal limit in EU is 0.2% and in US 0.3%) or 0% of THC and as such has no psychoactive effects.

Cannabis-derived extracts usually have a higher concentration of THC and a lower concentration in CBD.

Differentiation in medical and recreational use of CBD

The differences in regulations and laws in force regarding CBD, hemp and cannabis for medical and recreational use varies by country, in terms of its possession, distribution, and cultivation, and how it can be consumed and what medical conditions it can be used for.

Legality of Cannabis

Medical use of cannabis is now legalized in Australia, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Cyprus, Finland, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, North Macedonia, Norway, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, Poland, some states in the US and Thailand.

Recreational use of cannabis is prohibited in most countries; however, many have adopted a policy of decriminalization to make possession of small amounts of cannabis (marked as cannabis possession in the table) a non-criminal offence. Others have much more severe penalties – even imprisonment for several years. CBD as a non-psychoactive cannabinoid is usually not used recreationally.

Medical use of cannabis is now legalized in Australia, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Cyprus, Finland, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, North Macedonia, Norway, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, Poland, some states in the US and Thailand.

Legality of Medical Cannabis

CBD oil legal countries – country by country

Argentina, Austria, Belize, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Norway, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Virgin Islands, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Turkey, Japan

The legal status of CBD and hemp in Europe

In the next section we’ll answer the following questions: is CBD legal in Europe? Which are the EU countries where CBD oil is legal? What specific regulations and exceptions do individual countries have, and in time we will try to include all the CBD oil legal EU countries.

CBD oil in Germany

Is CBD oil legal in Germany?

Cannabidiol is completely legal in Germany, as long as preparations derived from plants and parts of plants, or plants and parts of plants have been cultivated in European Union countries with EU certified hemp seeds and the THC content in them is below 0.2%.

Countries with specific CBD laws and regulations

CBD oil in Austria

Is CBD oil legal in Austria?

In Austria the legal situation regarding CBD is a bit more complicated than in Germany, cannabis flowers, extracts and hashish containing CBD can be legally sold, but not as a food supplement or medication and the maximal content of THC allowed is 0.3%. As a result of this legal vagueness, CBD oil in Austria is being sold as aroma oil in local shops and can be legally sold online. You can order our products to Austria without any worries HERE.

CBD oil in Georgia

Is CBD oil legal in Georgia?

There are very “strange” laws in Georgia regarding hemp, cannabis and CBD products. Any kind of cultivation is strictly prohibited – the same applies to selling. However, acquisition of up to 70g of dried flowers or leaves and up to 100g of fresh flowers or leaves isn’t going to put you in jail – but if you possess more than that, the law stipulates imprisonment. The acquisition or storage of any amount of cannabis/hemp violates the law, but the punishment is unclear. Smoking cannabis/hemp is kind of regulated because you have to be older than 21, you have to be in a private residence or at home and no minors have to be nearby – if you don’t meet all those conditions, the police can (and probably will) react. The laws about CBD oil legality in Georgia still remains quite unclear.

CBD oil in India

Is CBD oil legal in India?

The laws in India are very unclear. Growing hemp is allowed only with special permission. It is said, that cannabis medicines are allowed and legally available under the AYUSH ministry as Ayurvedic medicine – but there isn’t a clear explanation if the CBD products, such as oils, are also a part of Ayurvedic medicine. The consumption and carrying of bhang (a drink made from cannabis) is allowed in India. It is advised to be careful when importing/exporting any products that are made from hemp/cannabis.

CBD oil in Ireland

Is CBD oil legal in Ireland?

Under EU regulation hemp may be grown as long as the THC content is less than 0.2% and as a member state of the EU, the same applies to Ireland. However under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1977 all derivatives of cannabis and hemp containing even traces of THC are illegal for sale and possession in Ireland, therefore we can say that only CBD products with 0.00% of THC are legal in Ireland.

CBD oil in Norway

Is CBD oil legal in Norway?

Norway is not part of the European Union and as such has some additional restrictions regarding the use and sales of CBD. In Norway, hemp and cannabis are prohibited to grow, but hemp products like hemp seed oil, hemp protein powder,…, are completely legal as they don’t contain any cannabinoids. However, the use/possession of CBD is legal only if the CBD is prescribed by a doctor.

CBD oil in Russia

Is CBD oil legal in Russia?

The law is a bit unclear about CBD oil legality in Russia, therefore we wouldn’t recommend having in possession any kind of CBD products in Russia. Hemp is being cultivated throughout the greater part of the country, but any extraction process is illegal. Possession of cannabis (up to 6 grams or two grams of hashish) is an administrative offence, punishable by a fine or detention up to 15 days. Possession of larger amounts of cannabis is a criminal offence.

CBD oil in Sweden

Is CBD oil legal in Sweden?

The legal status of CBD in Sweden is a bit complicated, as the Swedish medical authorities consider CBD to be an active ingredient, therefore it must follow strict Swedish law regulating pharmaceuticals. The Medical Products Agency classifies it as a drug, which also requires a permit for sale. Selling supplements containing CBD is now prohibited in Sweden. In addition, statements of health/beauty benefits and/or oral consumption mentions in instructions for use are also prohibited in marketing and sales of CBD. However, CBD is not on the banned substance list in Sweden and you can buy CBD products but only from outside of Sweden. In conclusion use and sales of CBD in Sweden is legal if the THC concentration in it is 0.00%. Otherwise, only parts of the plant that are allowed are the subterranean parts and the seeds.

CBD oil in Ukraine

Is CBD oil legal in Ukraine?

According to numerous sources, CBD is legal in Ukraine. Hemp is also legal in Ukraine, but there are some “tricks”. There is no problem using hemp for the production of fibre, but the upper parts (flowers) that contain the highest concentration of cannabinoids are illegal. It is also hard for a “normal person” to obtain a growing licence for hemp. It is usually reserved for laboratories and farmers, who need to meet specific criteria and are also controlled during the whole process. It is said that CBD products containing a low amount of THC are also legal (assuming that the content of THC is similar as in other parts of Europe – 0,2%).

What countries is CBD legal – table

In the table below, you can also see the countries where CBD is also used for medical purposes marked in the last column – “Medical”.

To help CBD users in finding the answers about the legality of CBD, hemp and cannabis-based products, we created a non-formal informative table. Apart from the fact that the laws and regulations regarding CBD are constantly changing in numerous countries, we also have limited and unverified information about this topic, so we kindly invite you to contribute by sharing updated information (possibly with source links) in the comments section.

CountryCBDHempTHC lim.[%]CannabisMedical
BelgiumNoYesUp to 3 gN/a
BelizeYesYesUp to 10 gNo
Bosna i HercegovinaYesYes0,2NoNo
ColombiaYesYesUp to 22 gNo
Costa RicaYesN/aN/aNoN/a
Czech RepublicYesYes0.3YesN/a
Hong KongYesN/aN/aNoYes
IndiaUnknown (possibly prohibited)Yes (with permission)UnknownState regulatedAs a medicine (Ayurvedic medicine)
LuxembourgYesYesLegalization in progressNoN/a
New ZealandYes/perscriptionN/aN/aNoYes
Northern IrelandYesYes0.2NoN/a
NorwayPerscription onlyNo0NoN/a
ParaguayYesYesUp to 10 gNo
PortugalYesYesUp to 25 gYes
Puerto RicoYesN/aN/aNoYes
South AfricaYesYesLegalNo
SpainYesYesRestrictedLimited (only pharmaceuticals)
SwedenYesYes, but limited0.0NoPrescription (only pharmaceuticals)
Virgin IslandsYesN/aYesYes
United KingdomYesYes0.2NoYes
United StatesYesYes0.3State regulatedState regulated
UruguayYesYesProhibited for foreignersYes
TurkeyYesRegion dependent0NoYes

Author: M.B.



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