CBD – current legal regulations in the UK and other European countries

January 22, 2020 Bionativa

Many people wonder if CBD oil is legal and if so, where. So we decided to clarify the statutory regulations regarding cannabidiol. In this article you will learn, among others can you take CBD with you on vacation in Europe and whether CBD must always be without THC.

Current legal regulations in the UK

In the United Kingdom, as part of the European Union, it is legal to grow hemp, provided it does not contain more than 0.2% THC. That means that CBD oil or another product with CBD content does not have to contain 0% THC at all. Negligible amounts are legal and do not have psychoactive effects. It is worth emphasising, however, that selling CBD in the UK is only permitted as a dietary supplement. Advertising products containing cannabidiol as medical products is illegal.

Where CBD is legal?

Although the European Union allows the possibility of growing hemp for CBD, provided that the THC content does not exceed 0.2%, legal regulations are not the same in all European countries. Moreover, the European Union has little control over the legitimacy of CBD.

Countries, where CBD supplementation is legal, can be divided into 4 groups.

  1. Countries where a THC content of 0.2% or higher is allowed.
  2. Countries that allow the recreational and medical use of cannabis.
  3. Countries where there are no legal regulations regarding CBD.
  4. Countries where CBD can be owned or used only by people with a prescription.

Countries, where you can supplement CBD with a THC content lower than 0.2%, include Bulgaria, Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Cyprus, Slovenia and Spain together with the UK. 

Interestingly, there are countries in Europe that allow CBD supplementation with THC content higher than 0.2%. In the Czech Republic and Luxembourg, CBD may contain up to 0.3% THC, while in Italy the allowed THC content is up to 0.6%. That means that you need to be vigilant if you want to shop in these countries. Importing CBD oil from them into the UK may result in breaking the law.

Keep in mind Switzerland, Finland, Sweden, Austria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Portugal and Romania. In these countries, CBD is not considered a psychoactive substance; therefore cannabidiol is entirely legal (Switzerland, however, allowed a slight limit – the maximum THC content is 1.0%) or they lack regulations regarding CBD.

Denmark is the only country where it’s allowed to own and use CBD only with a prescription.

In Belgium and the Netherlands, CBD can be freely supplemented because it is legal to use cannabis.

Where CBD is illegal?

There is only one country in Europe that has wholly banned CBD – Slovakia. CBD is classified there as a psychoactive agent, so having CBD oil or another cannabidiol product is illegal. Therefore, if you are planning a trip to Slovakia, be on your guard!


Disclaimer: All information provided by Bionativa serves to convey valuable knowledge to our customers. That information should not be treated as medical claims. Keep in mind that CBD-based products available on Bionativa are dietary supplements only.