Regulations for selling CBD online

Written by: Romain Lyomat


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Regulations for selling CBD online

The definition of CBD

Cannabidiol, more commonly known as CBD, is a molecule present in cannabis. However, unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is also found in this plant, CBD does not produce a psychoactive effect. It therefore does not cause a feeling of “high” or euphoria.

It is one of several cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant that is attracting increasing attention for its potential health benefits. According to various scientific research, it could have several therapeutic effects:

  • Relieving certain forms of pain
  • Reduction of stress and feelings of anxiety
  • Improved sleep
  • Regulation of vital bodily functions such as appetite or the immune system
Bénéfices potentiels du CBD

We would like to emphasize that this is a therapeutic potential currently being examined and that CBD is not a drug. It is necessary to always use CBD under medical supervision.

As for its marketing on the internet, it obeys certain strict rules to prevent abuses and ensure its quality. We will address these points later in order to provide you with all the information necessary for a secure online purchase.

European laws

European regulations regarding the online sale of CBD differ greatly from one nation to another. Additionally, the Forbes (2020) article highlights this diverse and complicated legal landscape.

Some member states of the European Union authorize the trade of CBD, if it comes from legally recognized varieties of cannabis and contains only less than 0.2% or 0.3% (depending on nations) of THC – the dominant psychoactive compound in cannabis. As for the others, they are more rigorous and completely prohibit its marketing.

Spain perfectly illustrates this duality: although the cultivation of hemp intended for the production of CBD is legal, its incorporation into products for human consumption is not permitted. On the other hand, in the United Kingdom for example, it is simply sufficient to comply with food standards to market products enriched with CBD.

This legal mix suggests that a unification of laws on CBD across Europe would be beneficial for both consumers and businesses.

The situation in Canada: regulations for the sale of CBD online

Vente CBD en ligne au Canada

The federal legal framework

In Canada, the federal legal framework offers a captivating vision for the marketing of CBD on the internet. But also, the Cannabis Law, implemented in October 2018, authorizes and rigorously controls access to cannabis for therapeutic and recreational purposes. Thus, this legislative text includes products derived from cannabis such as cannabidiol (CBD). A move towards more flexible regulation is emerging to boost electronic commerce in this sector.

Specific provincial regulations

It is crucial to clarify that each Canadian province has its own law relating to the sale of CBD. Some only allow distribution through authorized resellers while others allow direct sales to consumers via specialized web platforms. This provincial diversity makes an exhaustive mastery of local rules essential for any company wishing to engage in this activity.

Focus on the United Kingdom: regulations for the sale of CBD online

In the United Kingdom, specific regulations govern the sale of CBD online. Here are the essential elements to remember:

  • The maximum THC content accepted is 0.2%.
  • Each CBD product must come from an EU-validated variety of industrial hemp.
  • Traders must acquire a license issued by the British Food Standards Agency (FSA).
  • Any medical claims related to CBD products must receive approval from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
  • Labeling of items must comply with stringent FSA guidelines.

It seems crucial to us to emphasize the fact that these regulations are likely to change and evolve quickly. We therefore strongly suggest that you frequently consult the official sites in order to stay up to date.

Selling CBD online

La vente du CBD en ligne

The obligations of CBD traders on the internet

In the online commerce sector, those who sell CBD are subject to various regulations. First of all, their first responsibility is to ensure the traceability of their items. Then, each item marketed must be accompanied by a certificate attesting that it respects the maximum legal level of THC (0.2% in Europe and 0.3% in the United States). They must ensure that their product does not include other prohibited substances.

In addition, they have an obligation to educate consumers accurately about the properties and effects of CBD. No competent authority can make a therapeutic claim without having scientifically validated the evidence.

Sanctions for non-compliance with regulations

Violation of established standards exposes these traders to significant legal implications. Sanctions can vary depending on the seriousness and repeat offense: they can range from a simple warning to considerable fines or even administrative closure of the website.

If a seller makes false or misleading advertising regarding the supposed benefits of CBD, authorities can also prosecute them for unfair trade practices.

It is clear that each participant in this area has every advantage in carefully respecting these rules in order to avoid any complications with the law.


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