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Cannabis in Italy

Thirty years ago (1990), in Italy, there was a Consolidated Law whose objective was to prevent, prohibit and punish all drug-related activities and thus be able to combat the growing problem of drug consumption and trafficking.

In 2014, Law 79 was introduced in an effort to identify the least dangerous narcotic substances. According to this law, cannabis is one of the least harmful drugs. However, possession of it can lead to the suspension of the driver's license or its loss for one to three months. In addition, defendants with no prior convictions typically receive a reprimand and a formal request asking them to stop using cannabis.

As of 2016, there was a change in the legislation on the production of cannabis. Its cultivation was legalized and regulated, legalizing light cannabis, that is, cannabis with a THC concentration of less than 0.2%.

Bandera de Italia con planta de cannabis.

What is the situation like today?

Today, it is illegal in Italy to sell or buy cannabis without authorization from the Ministry of Health, the penalty for this “crime” is much less than others, but there are still loopholes in the law. It is possible to grow cannabis but not sell it; the purchase of the same must be made in a pharmacy with medical authorization.

Concerning CBD, it is legal to purchase and use therapeutic CBD oil (used for medical conditions). It can only be purchased at pharmacies with a prescription.

Buying CBD oil without a prescription is also legal, but THC levels must be 0.6% or lower. It can be marketed as a food supplement, like hemp seed oil. The conditions that in Italy are authorized to be treated with medicinal CBD are: glaucoma, chronic pain, anxiety, multiple sclerosis, nausea, spinal cord injuries, Tourette syndrome, AIDS/HIV, anorexia and cachexia

Regarding cultivation, it has been legal in Italy since 2016. It is very beneficial for some Italian companies which have started manufacturing hemp-based products, such as hemp paste and construction materials. It is also legally grown by the Italian Army, the only organization authorized today to cultivate cannabis with medicinal potential.

The main medical cannabis consuming regions are: Emilia-Romagna, Lazio, Molise, Marche, Campania and Sardinia.


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