Is CBD Oil Legal?


Is CBD legal in the UK? What about top products like CBD oil?

We’ve got good news: it is indeed! Here’s what you need to know about CBD oil in the UK. 

Products like CBD oil were first legalized in the UK in 2015. 

The misuse of drugs designation was what really changed things: it legalized CBD products containing less than 0.3% THC and/or 1 milligram of THC total. Today these types are legal for any UK citizen over the age of 18. 

CBD UK law: going back in time

Cannabis has been around in the UK for a long, long time. Evidence of cannabis seeds were found in York and Micklegate in 10th-cenutry viking settlements! It’s thought that these early settlers used more fibrous varieties of hemp to make rope, fishing gear, and canvases. [1]

Fast forward to 1533, when English King Henry VIII mandated that all homeowners grow a certain allotment of hemp on their property. This hemp was primarily used on ships. Eventually cannabis plant and hemp became significant parts of the UK economy. 

Medicinal cannabis plant products were actuallly brought to the Western world by a UK-based physician named William Brooke O'Shaughnessy. [2]  O'Shaughnessy had first encountered medicinal cannabis plant while working in India with the East India Company. What he saw there impressed him, and he brought cannabis back home with him when he returned to Britain in 1842.

From there, medicinal cannabis boomed. O'Shaughnessy worked alongside other British physicians to bring cannabis to market, and soon enough cannabis and hemp-based tinctures could be found in every pharmacy. 

But this initial boom was short-lived. 1925’s International Opium Convention introduced the concept of cannabinoids as a dangerous drug, and in 1928, cannabis was finally banned for good. [3] What had once been viewed as a legitimate medical product was now seen as something dangerous — something reserved for the fringes of society.  

“Coloured seamen of the East End and clubs frequented by Negro theatrical performers" were reportedly the types of groups that used cannabis. Cannabis arrests increased dramatically throughout the 60s: there were 235 arrests in 1960 and 4,683 in 1970. [4]

Cannabis became even more illegal with the passing of the Misuse of Drugs Act of 1971. This act classified cannabis as a Schedule B drug. It wouldn’t be until the late 90s that UK citizens finally began to remember the health benefits of cannabis and hemp — and it wouldn’t be until 2015 that laws finally became hemp-friendly again.  

Is the CBD cannabinoid legal?

Under UK law, virtually any hemp-derived CBD product is legal. LEgal products include CBD tinctures, drops, oils, vapes, edibles, capsules, topicals, and much more. 

UK citizens over the age of 18 can freely buy CBD without needed a medical license (also known as a green card). Citizens can also travel with CBD, use it throughout their daily routine, and buy it online. 

While CBD is indeed legal in the UK, several different factors involved are less black and white. Here’s what you need to know about CBD’s legality. 

Is CBD legal in UK

Is CBD legal in UK?

CBD products of all types are indeed legal in the UK. That being said, the government places stricter regulations on CBD products than many others. Products must contain less than 0.2% THC (less than the usual standard of 0.3%) and must undergo certain types of lab testing. 

Is CBD illegal in the UK?

Nope! That being said, CBD products that might be legal in other areas are actually illegal in the UK — if they contain more than the Country’s legal limit of 0.2% THC. That means some products that are legal in the US or Canada are actually quite illegal in Britain. 

CBD legal in the UK: what about smokeable hemp?

Smokeable hemp is also legal in the UK. Once again, though, there’s a catch: smokeable hemp products must verifiably contain less than 0.2% THC. It can be tough for hemp farmers to get their crop’s THC content this low while maintaining high amounts of other cannabinoids.  

Hemp farmers are also held to other types of regulations. The UK government has stated that licenses are needed to grow hemp if “[the] production of hemp fibre [is] for industrial purposes or the obtaining of seeds which are then pressed for their cannabis oil.”

UK hemp farmers must also state the reason they’re growing hemp — and grow their stock from preapproved seeds.  

There are also enforcement issues when it comes to smokeable hemp products. Some Londoners have been wrongly accosted or arrested for possessing smokeable hemp. 

CBD legal in the UK:  what about shipping?

Shipping CBD products is fully legal in the UK. Ordering CBD products online is fully legal, too. CBD products can be shipped all across the Country.

CBD in the UK: the details

Here are some additional details you may want to know about CBD’s legality in the UK. 

Is the CBD cannabinoid legal?

CBD is not an illegal drug per European Court rulings. “[CBD] does not appear to have any psychotropic effect or any harmful effect on human health,” the court ruled in 2020. 

The World Health Organization, United Nations, European Union, and other areas seem to be changing their CBD laws over time — and the UK is following suit. While specific CBD laws can vary slightly from Country to Country, laws are getting more friendly in virtually all areas. 

Is hemp oil legal in the UK?

Hemp oil is also legal in the UK. That being said, super-concentrated hemp oils may not be. At a certain point a hemp oil’s THC concentration is likely to exceed 0.2% THC, making it illegal. 

Other important points to keep in mind include:

  • Retail CBD products sold in the UK are not considered medicinal products. They’re actually considered supplemental or cosmetic products, depending on how they’re applied. 

  • As long as they meet certain testing requirements, CBD products can be sold in the UK regardless of where they were processed or manufactured.  

  • THC-rich products are illegal. CBD products cannot contain more than 0.2% THC by dry weight, nor can they contain more than 1 milligrams of THC per container. 

  • CBN-rich products are also illegal. CBN is considered a controlled substance.

  • Medicinal cannabis is legal by prescription for several health conditions. 

  • The Misuse of Drugs Act does not distinguish between hemp, cannabis, or ‘marijuana.’

  • Brands that sell CBD products in the UK must submit a Novel Food Application (NFA) for their products.

  • CBD-rich hemp flower is not legal in all areas and may be subject to local regulations.

Can I travel from the UK with CBD?

UK residents may also be wondering: can they take their favourite CBD product(s) out of the Country with them?

As long as said products are 

Legal in the UK

Legal in the destination Country

...then passengers can freely travel with their CBD!

If your CBD products contain THC or CBN, however, then you’re technically traveling with a controlled substance — and that’s not a recipe for success at any airport.  While some EU travel destinations allow for CBD products with far more THC (Switzerland’s THC cutoff is 1%), these products are unlikely to get cleared at UK travel points. 

Keep your CBD’s physical volume in mind during your travels, too. Carry-on containers can’t contain too much liquid, so pack large CBD oils or tinctures in your checked baggage! 

Is CBD oil legal in the UK? Yes it is!

Just don’t forget that any given CBD oils must contain less than 0.2% THC and 0.2% CBN. Since products that contain more than 1 milligram of either cannabinoid are also illegal, it might be best to stay away from oversized CBD products. 

Your best bet in selecting a legal CBD product is simply buying from a trusted UK-based CBD brand. These brands will be familiar enough with local laws to produce only fully legal products. 

Is CBD oil legal in the UK?

CBD oil is legal...and booming! British citizens from virtually all walks of life are beginning to take CBD and experience its natural plant power for themselves. 

What about marijuana?

Marijuana falls into an entirely different category than CBD does. It’s illegal to produce, possess, or consume.

As a Class B drug, there are serious penalties associated with breaking these rules. Unlicenced dealing, production, and product trafficking may result in up to 14 years in prison — and huge fines. Merely possessing cannabis may result in up to five years in prison. 

If you’re lucky, possession of less than an ounce of cannabis may just result in a “cannabis warning.”  

Cannabis was slightly less illegal from 2004 to 2009, when it was reclassified as a less serious Class C substance. After that, however, new Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced that cannabis would move back into its former classification as a Schedule B substance. [5

Is CBD legal in London?

Yes, CBD is legal in London. In fact, large cities like London are among the areas where CBD is most popular! The quality of CBD products in London, however, may not be as high as it is in other areas. 

The best CBD oil in the UK

So...the right kinds of CBD products are fully legal in the UK. Ready to try these products for yourself? Great! Keep reading to find out what makes CBD oil — or any other type of CBD product — truly great.  

The best CBD oil in the UK: how to find a local source

These days the highest-quality CBD products can be found online. While some of the UK’s large cities do offer CBD products in health stores or specialised CBD shops, your best bet is still shopping online! 

Why? Because online CBD shops like Reakiro’s feature truly top-shelf products at bottom-shelf prices.

CBD oil in the UK: read reviews!

Another surefire way to find premium products is simply to read product reviews. Brands can make all sorts of CBD-related claims, but the best way to sort through the noise is by seeing what actual customers say. 

CBD oil in the UK: read reviews

CBD oil in the UK: how to order online

Ordering CBD oil online is surprisingly simple. If you’d like to order CBD oil from Reakiro, just head over to this page and add whatever looks good to your cart! Free shipping on all orders over 65 Euros.

Summing things up

CBD oil is fully legal in the UK as long as it meets certain qualifications. Order from a UK-based CBD Company for best results — and don’t forget to read the reviews first. You should be feeling better in no time.