Is CBD legal in Australia?

A gavel with a white background

Understanding CBD Laws in Australia

Cannabidiol, commonly known as CBD, has been gaining global attention due to its potential therapeutic benefits. However, the legal status of CBD varies significantly from one country to another, creating a complex legal landscape. In this article, we will delve into the legal status of CBD in Australia, providing a comprehensive overview of the relevant laws and regulations.

The Legal Framework Surrounding CBD in Australia

In Australia, CBD is considered a Schedule 4 drug under the Poisons Standard. This means it is a Prescription Only Medicine or Prescription Animal Remedy. The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) oversees the regulation of CBD products in the country, and it has set out specific criteria that must be met for legal use.

Prescription-Based Access

One of the primary ways to legally access CBD in Australia is through a prescription. This requires a consultation with a medical professional who can assess whether CBD is an appropriate treatment option for your condition. Once a prescription is obtained, it can be filled at a pharmacy that carries the product.

Special Access Scheme

Australia also has a Special Access Scheme (SAS) that allows healthcare practitioners to access therapeutic goods, such as CBD, that are not included in the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG). This scheme is typically used for patients who are seriously ill and have conditions where conventional treatments have failed.

Over-the-Counter Access

In late 2020, the TGA down-scheduled low-dose CBD products (up to 150mg/day) to a Schedule 3 drug, meaning they can be purchased over-the-counter at pharmacies without a prescription. However, as of now, no products have met the TGA's stringent safety, quality, and efficacy standards to be registered for over-the-counter supply.

Importing and Exporting CBD

Importing and exporting CBD in Australia is heavily regulated. It is generally illegal to import CBD products without a permit from the Office of Drug Control. Similarly, exporting CBD products requires a permit and is subject to strict guidelines. Violations can result in severe penalties, including fines and imprisonment.


In conclusion, CBD is legal in Australia, but its use is heavily regulated. It is primarily available through prescription or the Special Access Scheme. Over-the-counter products are theoretically possible but, as of now, none meet the TGA's standards for non-prescription sale. Importing or exporting CBD without the proper permits is generally illegal. Therefore, anyone considering using CBD in Australia should consult with a healthcare professional and adhere to the relevant laws and regulations.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.