Table of Contents
Please take note that this post only refers to cannabinoids extracted from hemp, not marijuana, when it mentions cannabinoids or cannabinoid products.
The market for cannabinoids is now booming. It shouldn’t take you long to realize that this is one of the fastest-growing product sectors, with items ranging from Cannabis water and CBD toothpaste to cannabinoid-infused dog treats.
Cannabinoids are essentially available everywhere right now, from supermarkets to teen brands. Other businesses than big-box retailers are benefiting from growing legality and exposure. Local physical establishments and online retailers are both moving forward.
The statistics are conclusive:
- In 2022 the EU medical cannabinoids marked was arround 4,5 billion Euro. By 2027, it is anticipated that the market for EU medical cannabis will total 13 billion Euro.
- More than 10% of EU have used a cannabis-related product. One in seven of those individuals regularly consumes CBD. 49% of consumers have bought cannabinoids at a store, and 43% have bought them from online sellers.
It’s alluring to enter the cannabinoid sector for yourself given the industry’s steady expansion and a market that shows it’s more than simply a fad. However, you must first do your homework, familiarize yourself with safety procedures, regulatory requirements, and the specifics of selling and delivering cannabinoids.
To begin with, one of cannabis’ active ingredients is a cannabinoid called CBD (cannabidiol). Although the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) will intervene if claims are made that the products can cure, mitigate, treat, or prevent a disease, CBD is thought to alleviate symptoms without any psychoactive effects from THC (tetrahydrocannabinol, the component of marijuana that makes you high). For example, users say it helps ease pain or soothe occasional anxiety.
Cannabis with a THC content of more than 0.3% is prohibited in many EU countries, including the Netherlands. However, cannabis with less than 0.3% THC, also referred to as “hemp,” is allowed, while EU countries laws may differ. You should research the legal requirements in each country before selling products containing cannabinoids. Find out more on this subject in our article about EU Laws For cannabinoids in 2023.
Legal restrictions place a cap on the amount of THC and other ingredients that can be used in hemp-based products, similar to those that apply to alcohol. The maximum amount of THC allowed in hemp products for some countries around the world is zero. This means that any goods made with cannabinoids produced from hemp must be THC-free. If the THC content is less than 0.3%, hemp-derived cannabinoids are legal to use in the EU.
This comes as a result of the final proposal of the Common Agricultural policy (CAP). In October 2020 the European Parliament voted in favor of restoring the authorized THC level on the field from 0.2 % to 0.3 %. The new CAP was entered into force on January 1st, 2023. This post will discuss safe and legal ways to transport cannabinoids to both you and your customers.
Nota Bene: This post is strictly informational and not intended to be a substitute for professional legal or financial advice.
Is it Legal to ship cannabinoids? Four Factors to Consider
Cannabinoids are highly regulated and supervised, despite the fact that they are widely recognized and legal. Using the following indicators, you can assess whether the cannabis being sent by your provider is legal.
1. THC and cannabinoid effectiveness
You must be able to provide written evidence of the cannabis and THC content of the products you are transporting, and the THC level of the cannabinoid you transport must not exceed 0.3%.
2. The location of the plant’s origin.
Your organization should only sell cannabinoids extracted from hemp plants, not marijuana. Consult a lawyer if your cannabinoid is synthetic, but the THC content must remain at or below 0.3%. To ensure that the items consistently fulfill this standard, you must keep a close check on any suppliers or other partners you may have.
Whether you acquire it from a distributor or cultivate it yourself, all cannabinoid-containing products must originate from a registered grower. In other words, you cannot easily move your uncle’s experimental cannabis plants growing in his shed. Before bringing a marijuana product into Europe you should consult with an attorney.
You and your supplier run the risk of legal trouble, detention, and business closure if you sell illegal goods.
Your cannabinoid-containing products must be subjected to independent testing to demonstrate their chemical composition, including their THC level. Some of the aforementioned requirements may necessitate third-party testing as a prerequisite.
Cannabinoid shipping is somewhat complicated since you must ensure that the product is permissible to ship from the point of origin and lawful to receive at the destination, in addition to adhering to any restrictions imposed by the shipping carrier. Let’s explore who can and cannot ship cannabis.
1. Your cannabis business meets all the legal standards.
You may only sell cannabinoid products containing 0.3% or less THC if you:
- Possess all required licenses, including a grower, processor, or retailer license;
- Solely source from growers operating legal, licensed businesses;
- Have a third-party testing process; and
- Have documented results from this testing.
If you meet all of these requirements, you should be entitled to ship cannabis to countries where doing so is legal. (with the approved carriers listed below).
2. No, you do not satisfy the aforementioned requirements.
You run the risk of violating the terms and conditions of the authorised carriers listed below if you cannot absolutely establish that you have met all of the aforementioned prerequisite conditions.
If you attempt to mail Cannabinoid with a THC concentration of 0.3% or above, you could face consequences, including arrest. Your products may be found and destroyed at the very least while in transit.
Top Carriers for Cannabinoid Transport
Shipping firms have compiled a list of permissible cargo over time. You may send cannabis if they are legal, sent only to regions that authorize it, and comply with the requirements of the following shipping companies:
UPS will allow you to send cannabinoids if you have a license that authorize you to produce industrial hemp and the restriction that the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of such hemp (or its derivatives) cannot exceed 0.3%.
To transport cannabinoids with UPS, you must be able to identify the origin of the raw materials, how they were processed, and how you obtained them. (or who shipped the product to the supplier and how that supplier got it to the customer after the fact).
UPS will only carry hemp-based products, including cannabidiol, that are legal under all applicable EU and local regulations. It is the Shipper’s responsibility to ensure compliance with all applicable laws.
UPS reserves the right to dispose of any shipment containing Marijuana, Hemp, or Hemp-based products that Shippers are forbidden from transporting, UPS is not permitted to accept, UPS indicates it will not accept, or UPS has the right to refuse.
UPS will not accept packages containing Hemp items from retailers of Marijuana or Marijuana-related products.
DHL will transport cannabinoid products if the shipper meets the following conditions:
- The shipment complies with all applicable EU and local laws;
- The shipper maintains records establishing compliance with such laws, such as laboratory test results, licenses, or compliance reports;
- The shipment contains hemp or hemp-based products containing no more than 0.3% THC by dry weight.
- Documentation, such as certificates, may be required at any time; however, shippers are not obligated to submit such documentation at the time of shipment.
Three Things to Consider Before Beginning to Fill Cannabis Orders
Now that you are familiar with the foundations of legally exporting marijuana, there are a number of extra considerations to ensure that you cover all of your legal bases.
1. Be wary of International shipping
If you attempt to transport a hazardous material to a country outside the EU, you may face charges or have your goods destroyed. Many governments consider cannabis and its derivatives to be illegal.
Ensure that you are fully informed of the places to which your organization may legally ship marijuana products. Even in countries where cannabis is legal, shipping may be challenging. If you are based in the EU, it may be prudent to just ship inside Europe as opposed to trying to expand outside.
2. Consult with a legal counsel
Ensure that your legal staff reads your disclosures and is aware of where you want to ship your marijuana products, if applicable. Although the cannabis industry has expanded rapidly and dramatically, several jurisdictions still prohibit the sale of hemp-derived products. If you are uncertain, it is preferable to consult a lawyer. Each EU country has its own set of laws and restrictions.
3. Check your service providers once more
If you deal with a supplier instead of managing your own farms, processing/manufacturing facilities, or anything else, ensure that they do not violate any limits or shipping regulations, whether they pertain to the potency of their marijuana, where it is cultivated, or anything else.
Shipping items is a component of establishing a successful cannabis business. In addition, you need everything from authorized payment processing to innovative cannabis marketing methods that adhere to the norms and guidelines imposed by government agencies and digital titans like Facebook.
Cannabinoids are significantly more difficult to sell than apparel or novelty items, yet the market is expanding rapidly. Changes in government and society have recently occurred, but don’t expect them to stop there. To stay abreast of any changes, ensure that you are up-to-date on the marijuana regulations of various nations and the cannabinoid shipping rules of various carriers.
WeeDutch denies all responsibility for the aforementioned content, which is not meant as professional, legal, tax, or financial advice. Before making any decisions, please seek appropriate legal, business, or financial advice from a professional.