IS CBD LEGAL?CBD Laws in Europe
In Europe, marijuana and cannabis laws differ from country to country. While the general EU law permits the consumption of CBD products containing no more than 0.2% THC, there are a few exceptions such as Croatia, and Slovenia, etc; that applies an outright ban to all cannabis and cannabis derived substances including CBD.
CBD and medical cannabis are legal substances in Germany and have been so for over 2 years now. Patients requiring CBD are expected to get a marijuana card and doctors prescription for their medications. While recreational cannabis remains illegal, Germany holds a liberal stance on the private and public consumption of the substance. Italy Italy legalized cannabis for medical use in 2007, with many caveats. In the 1940s, Italy was said to be the world’s second-biggest producer of industrial hemp, but after World War II, the country adopted a different approach to the cultivation of hemp, banning the business completely. In 2017 , a government directive shifted the perspective by no longer requiring authorization for cultivating hemp with a maximum THC content of 0.2% with a tolerance level up to 0.6%. CBD Oil was Legal in Italy as long as the product had less than 0.6% THC. High CBD cannabis strains were also available in Italy in smokeable form, commonly called Cannabis Light.However, in June 2019, the Supreme Court outlawed so called 'Cannabis Light' as the Interior Minister put the pressure on to shut down CBD ? shops. The verdict means that the sale of cannabis light is prosecutable but no formal change of legislation has happened yet, so we should not expect all stores to shut immediately; that will depend on local enforcement.
Bulgaria made history by becoming the first EU country to allow free sale of hemp-derived cannabidiol. Tis makes CBD products legal and easy to purchase in Bulgaria, as long as they contain less than 0.2% of THC.
Cyprus follows the EU regulations and allows cultivation of hemp. Any products manufactured from this plans must not exceed 0.2% of THC, making regular CBD products legal to purchase.
Hemp derived CBD is legal to purchase as long as it has less than .3% THC (higher than EU limit of .2%THC).
In Austria the legal situation regarding CBD is a bit more complicated than in Germany, cannabis flowers and extracts containing CBD can be legally sold, but not as a food supplement or medication and the maximal content of THC allowed is 0.3%.
France is the largest producer of hemp in Europe, mostly used for hemp paper. It is unclear whether CBD oil is legal in France. France follows the general EU law for industrial hemp and allows legal purchase of CBD products with content of 0.2% THC or less. However, in 2018, french health authorities shut down 'CBD cafes' and sent out a directive clarifying regulation surrounding CBD products: 'Products, and especially CBD-based e-liquids are prohibited if they contain THC regardless of the rate and if they are not obtained from varieties and part of authorized plants.' France stated that 'the .2% THC limit principle exists in order to allow the use of hemp for industrial and commercial purposes'.This directive would seem to indicate that only CBD products with 0% THC are legal for sale/consumption, inconsistent with EU standards.
According to Greek law, hemp-derived products are not considered as drugs, as they do not contain high amounts of THC. Therefore, CBD products can be legally purchased in Greece as long as they contain .2% or less of THC.
Pharmacies and stores in Dublin have started selling CBD products which contain less than 0.2% of THC. This is because of the recent amendments to Irish law, which have recognized CBD (hemp-derived CBD) as a non-cannabis product, making it legal. These oils and products must be developed according to HPRA and EU standards to be accepted in the market.
While CBD products in Finland are legal, they are regarded as medicine, therefore require prescription. Importing CBD products form abroad is also not easy and heavily regulated.
While cannabis derived CBD is legal, there are controlled measures with prescriptions. Marijuana remains an illegal substance in Denmark and when reprimanded would cost you a small fine or on a heavier note, a prison sentence of up to 2 years depending on the quantity in your possession at the point of arrest. Danish laws unequivocally prohibit the cultivation, processing, sale and or distribution of marijuana. However, only recently (January 2018) whole plant for medical and wellness purposes was made legal for a 4 years pilot. To become eligible to purchase and use a control quantity of the substance in Denmark, you would require a written prescription from your licensed health care provider.
Sweden has some of Europe’s most restrictive drug laws. There are currently no specific laws about CBD in Sweden yet, so CBD is in a gray zone here. CBD is not classified as a medicine, but the medical agency is currently working on classifying it as medicine. Classifying CBD as a medicine needs to be tried in court first and the process will take a long time.According to EU laws, CBD products cannot contain more than 0,2% THC and this applies to Sweden as well. However, a recent court ruling (June, 2019) provided clarification that while hemp is excluded from the definition of cannabis, and therefore is not considered a drug..a preparation containing THC does not meet this exception and is therefore considered a drug. (https://www.nutraingredients.com/Article/2019/07/24/Sweden-s-Supreme-Court-outlaws-sale-of-THC-containing-CBD-oil)
CBD oil is widely accepted in Norway. The Norwegian Parliament decriminalized personal drug use in December 2017. As long as there’s 0% trace of THC, CBD is legal. Norway is not a part of the European Union, which has a .2% THC limit. It is legal to use and possess CBD only if it is prescribed by a doctor.
CBD oil is legal in the Netherlands as long as it was produced outside of The Netherlands and contains less than the legal concentration of 0.2% THC in its formulation.
The United Kingdom
Cannabis remains illegal in the United Kingdom although the government has made some concessions on the dispensary of medical cannabis. While the UK remains strongly averse to the idea of legalized cannabis, growing public concerns and agitation is likely to shift the pendulum in the nearest future.