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CBD in Europe: Legal Status of CBD Country by Country

— March 12, 2021

In Italy, it is allowed to buy CBD oil for medical purposes only with a prescription from your doctor.

The legality of CBD is not entirely cut and dry. Some countries are trying to push through legislation to legalise it as the benefits are, in some cases, overwhelming. At the same time, others are still limiting access to CBD products these days. Read on to find out the legal status of CBD in European countries.

Albania – Illegal

Although CBD is low in a potentially psychoactive THC compound or is free from THC completely, Albanian law makes no distinction between CBD and cannabis. This means CBD is considered in a legal grey area and it is not banned, but it’s not allowed either. However, private, personal use of cannabis is allowed if the user only has a ‘single dose’.

Andorra – Illegal

Cannabis is banned in Andorra and individuals caught with cannabis possession might receive a €1200 to €1800 fine or imprisonment for 2 years. As for CBD, Andorra does not have special CBD regulation and is not a member of the EU, so CBD is considered illegal.

Armenia – Illegal

Cannabis is banned in Armenia for all uses, and those caught with cannabis possession can be subjected to heavy fines or a jail sentence of up to 2 months.

Austria – Legal

In Austria, CBD products are no longer sold as medications or dietary supplements, with the exception of some patients who may benefit from CBD for medical uses. You can still legally buy cannabis flowers, hashish and extracts with less than 0.3% of THC online and in-stores if they are labelled as an aromatherapy product.

Belarus – Illegal

Belarus makes no distinction between cannabis and hemp in terms of psychotropic drugs. Thus, it is illegal to produce, distribute, sell or possess any form of cannabis for both recreational and medical purposes.

Belgium – Legal Grey Area – Restricted lean

Many EU countries allow the purchase of CBD products as long as they contain less than 0.2% THC, but CBD is considered technically illegal in Belgium. The 1912 drug laws state that any substance derived from the cannabis plant is prohibited, even if it does not contain THC. 

Currently, CBD can be purchased from a qualified pharmacist if it was prescribed by a doctor. Although it is illegal, it is still possible to buy CBD as its use in Belgium is tolerant and not strictly enforced.

Bosnia and Herzegovina – Illegal

The cultivation, production, possession and sale of cannabis of any form for both medicinal and recreational purposes are prohibited in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Thus, CBD is referred to as illegal.

Bulgaria – Legal

Bulgaria is the first EU country to allow the free sale of hemp-derived CBD products, which means that CBD is completely legal in Bulgaria if it contains less than 0.2% of THC.

Croatia – Legal

As Croatia is a member country of the European Union, hemp-derived CBD products are legal as long as the amount of THC compound does not exceed 0.2%.

Cyprus – Legal

Hemp-derived CBD products are legal for purchasing if they contain less than 0.3% of THC.

Czech Republic – Legal

It is legal to purchase hemp-derived CBD products as long as the THC content is less than 0.3%.

Denmark – Legal with a prescription

Danish law states that the use of cannabis is restricted for medical and scientific purposes, and you must have a doctor’s note to use cannabis in any form. Thus, CBD in Denmark is currently only allowed if you have permission from a doctor.

Estonia – Legal grey area

Estonian law states that the use of CBD is not prohibited. Consequently, CBD products with less than 0.2% of THC are perfectly legal in Estonia.

Finland – Legal with a prescription

Although CBD products are legal in Finland, they are considered a medicine and can only be obtained with a doctor’s prescription.

France – Legal

Currently, CBD is legal in France only if you are purchasing CBD products with 0% THC.

Georgia – Illegal

The use of cannabis is decriminalised in the Republic of Georgia. However, the cultivation and sale of cannabis are still banned, which makes CBD illegal in Georgia.

Germany – Legal

While medical use of cannabis in Germany requires a doctor’s prescription, buying CBD is legal in Germany, as long as the product contains less than 0.2% of THC. At the same time, the Novel Food Regulation prohibits the sale of CBD infused edibles, but you can still choose other formats of CBD products.

Greece – Legal

CBD products in Greece are legal as long as their content complies with the EU regulation of less than 0.2% of THC.

Hungary – Legal

As long as CBD contains less than 0.2% of THC, it is considered hemp and is thus allowed for use, sale and purchase in Hungary.

Iceland – Illegal

While there is no certain law on the production and sale of CBD in Iceland, the country’s law does not make a distinction between cannabis and CBD. In this way, CBD is illegal in Iceland.

Ireland – Legal grey area – Restricted lean

In Ireland, CBD is deemed to be in a legal grey area. Although industrial hemp with a THC content of 0.2% or less is allowed, the Misuse of Drugs Act 1977 states that all derivatives of cannabis, including hemp, that contain any traces of THC are illegal. Besides, CBD can only be legal in Ireland if it is obtained by cold pressing, which means methods of extractions such as solvent and CO2 extraction make CBD products illegal and unfit to sell.

Italy – Legal grey area (Restricted lean/Legal for medical use)

In Italy, it is allowed to buy CBD oil for medical purposes only with a prescription from your doctor. You can also purchase CBD products without a prescription, as long as they contain less than 0.6% of THC and sold as a “food additive”.

Latvia – Legal grey area

In Latvia, Indian cannabis is prohibited for growth and cultivation, but seed hemp is permitted for cultivation for fibre and seed production. Therefore, since CBD is not explicitly prohibited, CBD is considered legal if it doesn’t exceed 0.2% of THC traces during its production.

Liechtenstein – Legal grey area

Marijuana leaf on wooden surface, with a brown bottle and eyedropper on the leaf; image by CBD-Infos-Com, via
Marijuana leaf on wooden surface, with a brown bottle and eyedropper on the leaf; image by CBD-Infos-Com, via

In Liechtenstein, any cannabis product is referred to as an illegal drug if the average concentration of THC is at least 1%, while the cultivation of hemp with less than 1% of THC is allowed.

However, Liechtenstein does not have a specific ban on CBD, which means that CBD products that don’t surpass more than 1% of THC can be considered legal. But do not import CBD until you contact your local authorities.

Lithuania – Legal

Since the cultivation of industrial hemp was legalised in 2014, CBD is also legal in Lithuania if it contains no more than 0.2% of THC.

Luxembourg – Legal

CBD is legal in Luxembourg if it is sourced from industrial hemp, and the concentration of THC does not surpass 0.3% at any point in production.

Malta – Legal with a prescription

CBD is legal in Malta, but only for medical purposes, meaning it is only available with a doctor’s prescription.

Moldova – Illegal

Moldova’s law puts cannabis and its derivatives in the category of psychotropic substances that have no medical value. Therefore, CBD is considered illegal.

Monaco – Illegal

Both the recreational and medical use of cannabis-based products are illegal in Monaco.

Montenegro – Illegal

The current legal framework in Montenegro prohibits the sale and use of cannabis products, and, therefore, CBD is currently banned. 

Netherlands – Legal

CBD oil is allowed as a herbal product and can be legally sold and consumed as long as it is extracted from EU hemp and contains 0.05% of THC or less.

North Macedonia – Legal for medical use

While cannabis in North Macedonia is allowed for medical purposes with a prescription, recreational cannabis is considered illegal.

Norway – Legal

In Norway, CBD products are legal, as long as they do not contain any traces of THC. 

Poland – Legal

Hemp-derived CBD products are legal in Poland, as long as they don’t surpass 0.2% of THC at any point during production.

Portugal – Legal with a prescription

Medical cannabis is legal in Portugal while recreational cannabis is decriminalised to 25g. CBD is referred to be a medicine and technically only available with a doctor’s prescription.

Romania – Illegal

In Romania, the recreational use of cannabis is banned but is allowed for medical purposes as long as its THC content is less than 0.2%. Also, there are no restrictions on the source of CBD, so CBD oil can be extracted from marijuana or hemp, unlike most EU nations.

Russia – Illegal

All cannabis products are banned in Russia, no matter how much THC they contain. As such, individuals cannot possess, sell or purchase any CBD products in the country.

Serbia – Illegal

All cannabis products and derivatives like CBD are illegal in Serbia for both recreational and medicinal use. 

Slovakia – Illegal

CBD is included in the list of illegal psychotropic substances and considered illegal in Slovakia.

Slovenia – Legal

CBD is completely legal in Slovenia, as long as it doesn’t surpass 0.2% of THC levels.

Spain – Legal

When it comes to cannabis, Spain is also quite liberal, and its cultivation for personal use is legal. However, it is prohibited to sell CBD infused items as consumables. For this reason, CBD can be sold as cosmetics and must be labelled as ‘technical product’ or ‘for external use only’. And besides this required label, the CBD products sold in Spain must also contain less than 0.2% of THC.

Sweden – Legal

Sweden does not comply with the EU limit of 0.2% or less THC. Therefore, if you buy a CBD product in Sweden, make sure it is THC-free.

Switzerland – Unrestricted

It is permitted to sell and buy cannabis products as long as the THC content remains below 1%. There are no restrictions on CBD and other compounds.

Ukraine – Legal

Hemp-derived CBD is not classified in the same way as cannabis-derived products. This is why it is legal to possess CBD if the finished products do not contain any traces of THC.

The United Kingdom – Legal

In the UK, CBD is completely legal, as long as it contains no THC (unless prescribed by a doctor) and has been derived from an industrial hemp strain that is EU-approved or comes from outside the EU.

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