Are CBD Flowers Legal in the UK?

Reading time - 7 minutes - March 23, 2021

CBD and CBD-based products are taking the UK by storm. With cannabis remaining (mostly) illegal in the UK, other means of marijuana are slowly making their way into our lives and onto our shelves. A variety of CBD products such as: CBD hemp gummies, CBD oils, CBD hemp pain relief cream and CBD flowers, are becoming more and more mainstream in the UK and around the world. But whilst some are legal, others are not. Today we’re going to be delving into the question of: are CBC flowers legal in the UK? As usual with UK drug laws, the answer is somewhat confusing, but we’ve fortunately done all of the research you need to know in order to understand the drug laws around CBD flowers. We’ll also throw in some information on how to safely purchase CBD flowers too. For good measure. As always, strap yourself in. Let’s go. 

What is CBD and THC?

First things first, let’s define the terms CBD and THC because they are going to be coming up a lot in our discussion of CBD flowers. 


THC has psychoactive effects that produce the ‘high’ feeling people experience when inhaling weed; feelings of euphoria and joy. The higher the THC percentage, the more intense that high is. THC is illegal in the UK if it’s above 0.2% within the product. 


Alternatively, CBD does not have psychoactive effects. If anything, it has calming tendencies. CBD is used mostly in wellness products, which focus on healing, anti-inflammation and helping with anxiety and sleep deprivation. 

CBD flowers are a slight grey area since it tends to be hard to actually prove whether or not the flowers actually contain less than the allowable amount of THC. However! You can now actually test the levels of THC and CBD in your flowers using a Swiss hemp test which is available in the UK.

What are CBD Flowers? 

So, what are CBD flowers? Some call them CBD buds, CBD hash, CBD weed, but either way, CBD flowers are buds from the marijuana plant that are high in CBD and low in THC. They look exactly the same as usual marijuana, but what’s inside has been altered by the creators. THC and CBD may be the most prominent cannabinoids with cannabis, but they are still very different. The percentage of each within a bud will lead to extremely different feelings. CBD flowers usually contain around 15% CBD and 0.2% THC. 

CBD flowers are for those who prefer high CBD, low THC products. Usually this is for medicinal purposes or simply due to preference. 

Benefits of CBD

What are the benefits of CBD? Well, despite the research into CBD being slightly controversial, here is a list of the main health benefits of CBD. Many people use CBD everyday to help both physical and mental illnesses in many forms such as vaping, orally via tinctures, eating, applying creams to their skin or using different types of CBD like shatters, isolates or crumbles to add to their cooking or drinks.

CBD has been seen to help with:

Are CBD Flowers Legal in the UK?

One of the biggest questions on any weed-lovers lips is: Is weed legal in the UK? The truth is, UK drug laws on marijuana are somewhat inconsistent. Whilst CBD oils, CBD hemp gummies and CBD pain relief cream are legal to purchase within the UK, for some reason, CBD flowers are not. 

The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 clearly states that cannabis is illegal. And they define cannabis as this: 

“cannabis” (except in the expression “cannabis resin”) means any plant of the genus Cannabis or any part of any such plant (by whatever name designated) except that it does not include cannabis resin or any of the following products after separation from the rest of the plant, namely—

(a) mature stalk of any such plant,

(b) fibre produced from mature stalk of any such plant, and

(c) seed of any such plant;]

“cannabis resin” means the separated resin, whether crude or purified, obtained from any plant of the genus Cannabis;

This was how it was in the UK until CBD products and CBD health benefits became more mainstream. Then came along the Misuse of Drugs Regulations Act 2001. The Act stated that CBD products would be legal if they satisfied all three steps towards legalization:

1) it is not designed for the administration of the controlled substance, ie THC

2) any THC elements of the product are packaged in such a way that it cannot be recovered by readily applicable means, or at a level which would constitute a risk to health;

3) it contains no more than one milligram per component part of the product. 

CBD flowers not only satisfy these steps, but also satisfy European law, which states that if a product has THC levels of 0.2% then they are deemed legal. However, according to UK law, CBD flowers are not legal. The opinion of the government is that European laws are not the same as UK laws. This is where the confusion starts. Especially as the UK also states that certain seeds are legal to grow if they have less than 0.2% THC. However, in order to do this, you would need a hemp cultivation licence. It gets even weirder, because even if you had a licence, it would still be illegal to keep any of the buds after growing them. The confusion around CBD flowers is yet another example of the UK’s inconsistent and essentially weird drug regulations. 

Where can I Buy CBD Flowers?

Despite CBD flowers being technically illegal, they are still all over the internet for easy purchase. In fact, very rarely do the websites even inform customers that CBD flowers are illegal in the UK. It is quite common that customers buy CBD flowers without realising they are illegal, and will most likely use them without even being caught. 

However, if that’s a risk you aren’t willing to take, then why not try other CBD-based products. CBD hemp gummies, for example, are legal and are easy to buy. There are lots of benefits of CBD gummies, they have much the same effects as CBD flowers. Also, for physical ailments, why not try CBD hemp pain relief cream

However, if you are interested in purchasing CBD flowers off the internet regardless then it’s important to know a few helpful things. Dry herb vaporizers are legal to buy and they are a way to inhale your dry herb without needing tobacco or needing to burn anything. A dry herb vaporizer creates vapour at a lower temperature, rather than smoke at a higher temperature, which makes it a much healthier option to smoking. It might just be the perfect way to inhale your CBD flowers.

In addition, if you’re using CBD flowers for medicinal purposes, why not apply for a Cancard. The Cancard is a cannabis allowance card which can be applied for if your doctor has prescribed you medicinal marijuana. Since 2018, medicinal marijuana has been legal, but very expensive to get a hold of. Therefore, if you have a Cancard, you can avoid being prosecuted for using marijuana medicinally. What is the cancard? Find out here.

When will CBD Flowers be Legal in the UK?

Now you have all the information you need on CBD flowers, the only question left to answer is: when will they be legal in the UK? With the Cancard being released in 2020, and medicinal marijuana being legalized (sort of) in 2018, it seems that the UK are slowly moving towards a more accepting stance on marijuana. Whilst legalizing CBD flowers, and allowing people to actually smoke bud around the UK, might be a precedent that the government are not yet ready for, it’s surely only a matter of time. 

We hope you enjoyed the article, and as always, found it educational. Until next time. 

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