With the popularity of CBD growing by the day and research on the benefits developing rapidly, confusion remains on one question:
“Is CBD oil legal?”
The global CBD market was worth £967.2m in 2020, with growth being around six times higher than expected.
This could lead you to believe that CBD oil is legal around the world – but this isn’t always the case.
Laws and regulations around CBD, hemp oil, and cannabis are currently in a state of rapid change all around the world.
Differences in restrictions on growing, producing, selling and using CBD products vary wildly on a state-by-state, and nation-by-nation basis.
In this post, we are going to cover:
- What is CBD
- What makes CBD legal/illegal
- The legality of CBD oil around the world
But first, we’ll provide some context by taking a look at the basics. Understanding which components of your CBD oil are subject to legal restrictions will help you to navigate its legality around the world.
In this guide:
What is CBD oil?
CBD is short for cannabidiol, which is one of two well-known organic compounds within the cannabis plant.
The plant actually contains over 100 different cannabinoids, but of these, only two are well-known.
The first of these is THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is found in the marijuana plant, has psychoactive effects and is a controlled substance that is subject to legal restraints around the world.
In the UK, it is considered to be a Class B controlled substance in the UK under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.
The second is CBD, which has no psychoactive effects, is non-addictive and is growing in popularity as a natural herbal supplement.
Many CBD products contain trace amounts of THC, which is a natural result of the CBD extraction process.
If CBD is legal in a country, it is often a requirement that the THC content remains below a certain percentage.
If you’re travelling with CBD and want to know if CBD is legal around the world, we’ve compiled this handy guide that should help to clear up any confusion.
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Countries where CBD is legal
Is CBD legal in Argentina? 🇦🇷
Argentina passed a law that decriminalized Cannabis and its derivatives in 2009. However, while CBD is legal, it is only available from pharmacies and a CBD prescription is required.
Is CBD legal in Austria? 🇦🇹
Medical cannabis is available on prescription in Austria, which means that CBD is also available.
The THC content cannot exceed more than 0.3%, which is higher than the EU suggestion of 0.2%.
CBD cannot be advertised as a food supplement or medication in Austria.
Is CBD Legal in Australia? 🇦🇺
CBD is legal in Australia, however, all products containing cannabinoids must contain no more than 50mg of any cannabinoid per kg, including CBD.
CBD oil must also contain less than 0.3% THC.
Furthermore, as CBD is classified as medicinal cannabis, it is only available through a limited number of approved vendors.
Is CBD legal in Belize? 🇧🇿
CBD is legal in Belize, provided it is made from hemp plants and contains less than 0.3% THC.
Is CBD legal in Bulgaria? 🇧🇬
It is legal to cultivate, import and trade cannabis in Bulgaria as long as the THC content is below 0.2% by weight. This is in line with Guidelines provided by the Minister of Agriculture, Foods and Forestry.
However, producing cannabinoid drugs and CBD-containing products is prohibited. Interestingly, there is no direct ban on importing products that contain CBD, and these products are readily accessible within the Bulgarian market.
Is CBD legal in Canada? 🇨🇦
Given Canada’s relaxed approach to marijuana – it legalised medical cannabis in 2001 and recreational cannabis in 2019 – it is not surprising that CBD products are widely available here.
Each Canadian province specifies their own laws and regulations when it comes to the sale of cannabis and cannabis-derived products.
Technically, CBD oil can only be sold for medical purposes under federal law, but you can purchase CBD products over the counter in most provinces.
Is CBD legal in Chile? 🇨🇱
CBD is legal with a prescription in Chile. Without a prescription, CBD law in Chile is a bit of a grey area. The law does not prohibit the use of cannabis derivatives, but it can be sanctioned with minor fines.
Is CBD Oil Legal in China? 🇨🇳
Hemp-based CBD is technically legal in China as long as the THC content is very low or non-existent. China is one of the world’s leading hemp producers.
However, cannabis laws are strict and exceeding this THC limit can lead to serious consequences.
It is also illegal to bring CBD oil into China from elsewhere as this is considered a food product.
Is CBD legal in Colombia? 🇨🇴
CBD is completely legal in Colombia, provided the THC content is less than 1%. If you want to cultivate hemp for CBD production, you would need to obtain a license.
Is CBD legal in Costa Rica? 🇨🇷
CBD derived from hemp plants is completely legal in Costa Rica, provided the THC content is below 0.3%. However, import issues mean that availability is typically the problem, not legality.
Is CBD legal in Denmark? 🇩🇰
CBD legality is still very much a grey area in Danish law.
It could be said that CBD is legal, provided the THC content is below 0.2%. However, some argue that this isn’t the case, particularly when CBD is advertised as a medicine.
When CBD is advertised as a medicine, you need a prescription to be able to purchase it. To get around this, Danish people will often buy their CBD online from other European countries, or they will stick to topical products which are free from restrictions.
Is CBD legal in Greece? 🇬🇷
In Greece, CBD is legal for purchase and consumption if it is cultivated from industrial hemp with less than 0.2 percent THC.
Is CBD legal in Germany? 🇩🇪
According to the Act on Narcotic Drugs (Betäubungsmittelgesetz), CBD is legal if it is produced from certified EU hemp, contains less than 0.3% THC, and is not used for intoxication purposes.
Is CBD legal in Guatemala? 🇬🇹
CBD is completely legal in Guatemala, provided the THC content is below 0.3%. If you are travelling to the country with CBD, you should have no issues, provided you can provide details of the cannabinoid contents.
Is CBD legal in Israel? 🇮🇱
In 2022, Israel’s Minister of Health resolved that CBD products containing less than 0.3% THC would be excluded from the Dangerous Drug Ordinance, allowing it to be used and imported into Israel.
However, using CBD in food, supplements and cosmetics remains banned for at least the next two years. During this time, the Ministry of Health will invest in research and development activities that confirm the safety of including CBD in food and cosmetics.
Is CBD legal in Italy? 🇮🇹
There is no specific law in Italy stating whether CBD is legal or not. As it stands, we can only assume that the manufacturing, sale and possession of CBD are legal in Italy, but this could change.
Is CBD Legal in Japan? 🇯🇵
CBD is legal in Japan, however, CBD products must contain zero THC content.
This is because THC remains strictly controlled in the country, and all CBD products manufactured in or imported into Japan must be carefully formulated.
Is CBD legal in Luxembourg? 🇱🇺
CBD is available to buy in Luxembourg, provided the THC content is below 0.3%.
Is CBD legal in Mexico? 🇲🇽
CBD was legalised in Mexico in 2017. You are free to purchase and use CBD, provided the THC content is below 1%.
Is CBD legal in The Netherlands? 🇳🇱
CBD is legal in the Netherlands, provided it is produced from EU-grown hemp and has a THC content lower than 0.05%. This is much lower than the EU recommendation of 0.2%.
Is CBD legal in Paraguay? 🇵🇾
CBD is legal in Paraguay for medical purposes.
Is CBD legal in Peru? 🇵🇪
Like many places, CBD falls between the cracks in Peru. It is legal for medical purposes and provided the THC content is below 1%, it will not be subject to the country’s Narcotics Regulations.
Is CBD legal in Portugal? 🇵🇹
Portugal has one of the most radical drug policies in the world. The country decriminalised cannabis for recreational use in 2001 and made cannabis available for medical purposes in 2018.
As a result, there is a relaxed attitude towards CBD, and it is widely available and legal, provided the THC content is below 0.2%.
Is CBD legal in Puerto Rico? 🇵🇷
Hemp-derived CBD is legal in Puerto Rico, as it is protected by the 2018 Farm Bill.
Is CBD legal in Romania? 🇷🇴
The Romanian Supreme Court has decriminalised cannabis use for medical purposes but it is still forbidden for recreational use.
You will require a prescription to access CBD in Romania, and even then the THC content must be below 0.2%.
However, CBD products intended for external use (CBD topicals) are widely available.
Is CBD legal in Slovakia? 🇸🇰
Slovakia only recently removed CBD from its list of banned substances. The country now adheres to EU law, which means that products must contain less than 0.2% THC.
At present, only products for external use are allowed, but it is expected to relax laws to allow CBD products for internal use.
Is CBD legal in Spain? 🇪🇸
CBD is legal in Spain, provided the THC content is below 0.2%. This is in line with the EU hemp law.
Is CBD Oil Legal in South Africa? 🇿🇦
In 2018, cannabis was decriminalised for personal use in South Africa.
While CBD was already legal beforehand as long as THC stayed below a certain limit, it is now generally tolerated regardless of THC content.
Is CBD legal in Switzerland? 🇨🇭
Switzerland has strict laws around THC, but no rules around CBD whatsoever.
As a result, CBD oil is legal in Switzerland and even very high CBD strains can be produced, as long as THC presence doesn’t exceed 1%.
Is CBD Legal in Thailand? 🇹🇭
In August 2019, Thailand changed their laws to take CBD off its official list of narcotic substances.
Accordingly, CBD oil and other CBD products are now legal in the country, though only with a THC content of less than 0.2% by weight.
Is CBD legal in Uruguay? 🇺🇾
CBD is completely legal to sell, purchase and use in Uruguay. This is because cannabis is completely legal to use.
Is CBD oil legal in the UK? 🇬🇧
The reason for this is simple; these strains are very low in THC, whereas CBD from other sources can be less predictable in terms of its THC content.
The answer to the question, “is CBD oil legal in the UK” then, is yes, with the caveat that CBD products must contain less than 0.2% THC content.
Is CBD oil legal in the USA? 🇺🇸
CBD is still classed as a Schedule 1 drug by the Drug Enforcement Agency. Despite this, the Farm Bill allows for the cultivation of hemp for research or academic purposes, and many sellers currently hide behind this legislation.
Generally, the DEA doesn’t put a lot of effort into going after CBD users or sellers, so the question of whether or not you can sell it without getting into trouble mostly comes down to your local state laws.
Despite this, there remains some confusion about this – with CBD often being openly available in stores even in states where it is illegal or only available on prescription.
This means it’s always a good idea to research local laws, and not to simply assume it’s allowed simply because it’s available off the shelf in your local shopping mall.
As of today, CBD oil is allowed in some form in the following states:
CBD is allowed but only to be prescribed for those with seriously debilitating conditions and as part of clinical trials
CBD oil is allowed but only on prescription. A patient is allowed no more than 20 ounces, with THC content being 5% or less, and CBD content required to be equal or higher than THC.
CBD is completely legal and no prescription is required as long as THC content remains below 0.3%
Iowa allows CBD oil to be prescribed to patients with severe conditions such as AIDS and cancer. It remains illegal to purchase or for therapeutic use.
CBD is completely legal in Kansas and is exempt from the State’s marijuana laws. However, THC remains illegal, so all CBD products must be completely THC free.
Kentucky allows cultivation of hemp and production of CBD oil in state sponsored programs only. CBD oil remains illegal for purchase or possession, even among those who are allowed medical marijuana. Despite this, many use the 2014 Farm Bill as an excuse to keep using it.
CBD legality in Mississippi allows patients who suffer from epilepsy to use it as long as CBD content is above 15% and THC content is below 0.5%. It is also only available on prescription and cannot be legally purchased over the counter.
CBD is allowed but only for epileptic patients, and only from hemp sources.
CBD is available on prescription to those suffering from epilepsy, and cannot contain more than trace amounts of THC.
CBD is legal in Tennessee as long as it is made from hemp and not marijuana.
CBD remains illegal in Texas but is allowed for epileptic patients.
CBD is legal in Virginia for treatment of any condition but only when prescribed by a doctor.
CBD is legal in Wisconsin for treatment of any condition but only when prescribed by a doctor.
CBD is legal in Wyoming for epileptic patients, but only those who have failed to respond to all other treatments.
The list of states above includes those who have made specific rules to allow CBD oil, either in all cases or in specific medical situations.
While CBD laws vary from state to state, the general rule of thumb is that CBD oil from hemp is legal, whereas CBD from marijuana is illegal.
This is because of the lower THC content of hemp and is pretty similar to the UK rules.
For CBD products to be legally sold in the US, they must contain less than 0.3% THC content, adhere to both state and federal regulations, and be sourced from hemp grown by a licensed farmer.
Is CBD legal in the Virgin Islands? 🇻🇮
CBD products are completely legal in the Virgin Islands, provided that they are pre-packaged and have a THC content lower than 0.3%.
Countries where CBD is illegal
Is CBD legal in Albania? 🇦🇱
Albanian law does not make any distinction between CBD and cannabis, so it is illegal to buy, sell and use CBD in the country.
Personal use was decriminalised, but this means that you can only be in possession of a “single dose”.
Doctors are not permitted to prescribe CBD, either.
Is CBD legal in Belgium? 🇧🇪
Belgium does not allow the sale of products containing THC, including CBD. However, CBD may be purchased for external use.
In 1912, a law was passed to stop the use of illicit drugs. This means that no cannabis-derived products can be sold in the country.
Is CBD legal in Hong Kong? 🇭🇰
A few years back, the CBD market in Hing Kong was booming. It was widely for sale, and many were scrambling to get in on the action.
Fast forward to February 2023, new legislation came into effect, deeming CBD unlawful and designating it as a “dangerous drug” akin to heroin.
According to these new laws, the possession and consumption of CBD is punishable and can result in a fine of one million Hong Kong Dollars and a seven-year prison sentence.
And if that is not tough enough, the rules get even stricter when it comes to manufacturing, importing or exporting CBD, with potential consequences being life imprisonment.
Is CBD legal in Iceland? 🇮🇸
The law in Iceland is very much a grey area, which might make some people nervous about travelling to the region with their CBD products.
CBD products are allowed in Iceland, provided they do not contain any THC. Since most CBD products contain trace amounts of THC, it is difficult to say with certainty is CBD is legal.
Is CBD legal in Russia? 🇷🇺
No, CBD is not legal in Russia. All cannabis products are illegal, regardless of the THC content.
Is CBD Legal in Singapore? 🇸🇬
CBD is a controlled substance in Singapore. While buying and selling it are not illegal, possession is.
Therefore, visitors to Singapore should be very careful to leave their CBD at home.
Is CBD legal in Serbia? 🇷🇸
All cannabis-derived products are illegal in Serbia, whether they are for recreational or medical use. The THC content doesn’t matter in the eyes of Serbian law, all CBD is illegal.
Final words on CBD legal countries
As you can see, CBD laws around the world are incredibly varied. The law is also moving very quickly, so it’s important to check the latest restrictions if you plan to travel with CBD.
Laws and regulations vary across the globe, as do the different products that are available on the international market.
This means it’s critically important to do your research, and the best option is to find a premium product that goes through strict testing procedures to ensure it’s legal, organic and truly effective.