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France Authorizes Sales of CBD in All Its Forms

Updated: Jan 7, 2023

In January 2022 France banned "the sale to consumers of raw flowers or leaves in all their forms, alone or mixed with other ingredients, their possession by consumers and their consumption". This was a negative blow to cannabis businesses, particularly affecting those who use the medicinal plant to improve their quality of life and alleviate chronic pain.

Fortunately, almost a year later, the French state backtracked on this decision. Last December 29, the Council of State lifted the ban on the sale of plants containing cannabidiol. CBD can be sold in all its forms: oil, infusion, or raw flower. French justice no longer considers it, even in its smokable form, as a psychotropic drug. This favors the cannabis industry and allows access to those who need it most.

Why Did France Reconsider the CBD Ban?

France's highest court concluded that the sale of CBD in the form of leaves and flowers does not "create a risk to public health." The Council of State added that CBD has relaxing and anti-convulsive properties, but no psychotropic effect and does not cause dependence. Regarding the control of narcotic substances, such as THC, a resolution should be created to control it through rapid tests.

France was at a crossroads, as several decisions taken at the European level were not in line with what was happening in the country. In November 2020, the Court of Justice of the European Union affirmed that the ban on CBD in France was illegal and did not coincide with the principle of the free movement of goods. Since the substance is legal in several countries of the community.

The French Court of Cassation, therefore, ruled in June that any CBD legally produced in the EU could be sold in France. Finally, France had about 2,000 CBD stores by the end of 2022. The sector's turnover was estimated to be around €500 million, more than half of which is for the flower alone.

In conclusion, the ban on the sale of CBD not only affects those people who need it to improve their ailments but also the country's economy, the medicinal plant has a very positive effect.

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