10 CBD facts and figures from the UK

Over the last few years, CBD has quickly risen to become one of the most sought-after wellness ingredients in the world, and fewer countries have embraced CBD wellness more readily than the UK. Yet, many people are still unaware of some of the most interesting aspects of this incredible ingredient. That’s why we decided to take a closer look at some facts and figures about CBD in the UK. But first, let’s clarify what CBD actually is.


Cannabidiol – more popularly known by its abbreviation ‘CBD - is a compound naturally produced by the cannabis plant. It is the second most common cannabinoid after THC, but unlike THC, it is non-intoxicating. A large number of studies have demonstrated various therapeutic effects of CBD which interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) - a receptor system which has been found to play an important role in various bodily functions.

So, let’s get back to those facts and figures...

1. CBD is safe and non-addictive

As a non-intoxicating cannabinoid, CBD has little, if any, potential for abuse. In fact, the World Health Organisation (WHO) concluded in 2017 that “in its pure state, cannabidiol does not appear to have abuse potential or cause harm.” This ruling 

2. You can't overdose on CBD

There have been no known cases of an individual overdosing on CBD. While the suggested “toxic dose” of CBD was theorised in a 2011 study to be around 20,000mg – taken all at once – no studies have confirmed this. To put this into context, CBD oil tinctures tend to contain between 100 and 1500mg in an entire bottle. 

CBD Oils

3. CBD flower is not legal for sale in the UK

While CBD is completely legal in the UK, the law regarding “CBD flower” - the flowers and buds of low-THC hemp plants – is often misunderstood. Despite containing less than or equal to 0.2% THC, and so being non-intoxicating, the buds of the hemp plant remain illegal in the UK for processing, distribution, possession, and consumption.

4. Hemp grown in the UK cannot be processed for CBD

That brings us to another interesting fact regarding hemp cultivation in the UK. While the manufacture and distribution of CBD products is permitted under UK law, these products cannot be made using hemp grown in the UK. The illegal CBD-rich flowers and buds of UK hemp crops must be destroyed once crops are harvested. As a result, CBD extracts must be sourced from elsewhere, most commonly Europe or the US.

5. The CBD Oil market is projected to reach £1 billion by 2025

Despite only being seen as a mainstream health ingredient and food supplement for a few years, the growth of the CBD market in the UK has been nothing short of incredible. While a study by the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis found that the UK CBD market was worth £300 million in 2019, estimates suggest that the market value could reach £1 billion by 2025.

6. CBD Oil is the most popular CBD product

While a wide range of CBD products can now be found online, in specialist health shops, pharmacies, and even supermarkets, figures show that CBD oil tinctures remain the most popular CBD product. However, the growing availability of CBD drinks, skincare, edibles and other products may soon change this.

CBD Oils

7. Anxiety is the most commonly reported reason for using CBD

CBD consumers in the UK use CBD products for a variety of reasons, including self-management of common health concerns. While much more research is required before CBD can be recommended as an effective therapy for any of these issues, one study found that consumers often use CBD products to manage self-perceived anxiety, stress, sleep problems, and other symptoms. However, the most commonly reported reason for using CBD was for the management of anxiety.

8. Around 6 million people used CBD in the UK in 2019

According to the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis’ report, “CBD in the UK”, between 4 and 6 million people had used CBD in the UK in 2019. That equates to between 8 and 11% of the total UK population, and it is believed that this number may have increased significantly in the four years since the report’s publication.

9. CBD is one of over 100 cannabinoids found in cannabis

As mentioned earlier, CBD is a cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant – but did you know that it is one of over 100 such compounds! While CBD and THC are the most abundant cannabinoids, scientists have identified a large number of other compounds, some of which may have impressive therapeutic properties of their own.

10. CBD can be prescribed as a treatment for Epilepsy

Medical cannabis was legalised in the UK in November 2018. Since then, cannabis-based medical products have been recommended for the treatment of only a handful of conditions. One of these products is Epidyolex, a CBD-based medication which has been found to be useful in the treatment of some childhood epilepsies.