Is CBD Legal in Korea? How to Get Started?



CBD oil in Korea is big news considering the US has seen a boom within the cannabis market in the past few years once cannabis was legalized. The CBD market within the states is predicted to hit $20 billion by 2024.


With the success of CBD within the states, many entrepreneurs are wanting to take advantage on this industry in South Korea . Furthermore, what makes this news so surprising is that South Korea has always been against legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes; However, with this step toward legalizing medical marijuana, it'd be possible that marijuana will at some point be legalized in Korea. But first, before marijuana are legalized, CBD has got to be legalized. this is often a way easier process as CBD has been shown to provide many benefits to human health.


CBD for Medical Use Now legal in Korea

The legalization of recreational marijuana isn't coming anytime soon. However, the utilization of hemp oil or cannabidiol (CBD) is now legal for medical use. additionally , CBD has no hallucinogenic effects. Therefore, the medical profession has tested CBD for its efficacy in neurological and brain diseases. The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) will create regulations regarding medical cannabis. The laws in Korea are going to be strict regarding CBD. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) products are going to be prohibited. Not all cannabis plants are created equal. Hemp, for instance, has little or no THC but an out sized amount of CBD. It's an enormous craze within the US thanks to its relaxing effects. Scientists are still trying to work out exactly how CBD affects the body. Some initial studies have shown that CBD can help with variety of medical conditions.

The Potential CBD Market in East Asia

Early on everything regarding medical marijuana are going to be controlled by the Korean government. Therefore, the key here is that the cannabis market now has Korea as a target market. With possible other East Asian countries following in Korea’s footsteps. For Korean startups, this is definitely the right time to decide to start a CBD business in Korea. CBD products will soon be legalized for the overall public in Korea. Entrepreneurs who plan early can reap the advantages.

The Current State of CBD in Korea

The great news is that now people in Korea can attend a hospital and obtain medical CBD treatment. There are on the brink of 70 arrests made in Korea in 2018 for smuggling CBD into Korea. Koreans got to get a letter from their doctor explaining their condition and why CBD would be beneficial. Furthermore, the letter then must be taken to the Korean Orphan Drug Center for final approval which shouldn't take longer than every week . If CBD gets legalized in Korea, more patients would be ready to get affordable cannabis-based treatments at a more reasonable cost. Getting CBD oil from the hospital is 10 times costlier. At the instant, CBD isn't a household name in Korea. Many don’t fully realize the therapeutic and health benefits of CBD. Therefore there's not yet a buzz within the Korean population. However, as CBD products become popular within the States, it's only a matter of time before the Korean public starts to become knowledgeable about CBD.

Taking Steps to Line up a CBD Business in South Korea

There are many challenges to start a CBD business in South Korea. There are many challenges due to the legal landscape in Korea regarding CBD. The fundamental for a Korean CBD business to do is to locate a trustworthy partner within the U.S. This partner has got to have CBD that has zero THC. This may be difficult as most hemp contains a minimum of some levels of THC. Finding a partner that produces CBD with no THC should be your initiative, and of course has to meet all other Korean requirements.

Contact us if you would like to start you CBD business in Korea. We have been supplying nutraceutical and pharmaceutical ingredients to South Korea for over 10 years. We have fully compliant Korean market ready CBD products as well as experience in importing and exporting.

The moment CBD is legalized for the overall public, it's important to start out offline initially. It'll be difficult to sell CBD products on major Korean online eCommerce platforms like Coupang and G-Market, and also are going to be difficult to advertise using social media. CBD promotion on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can potentially get you banned. Therefore it is important to create your own eCommerce site for your CBD oils as well as to push your products into offline stores.


The three main industries which will be trying to find CBD to include into their existing products are:

-Korean Food Industry – Food, Candies, Drinks, and Snacks in Korea that incorporate CBD are going to be ready to find a distinct segment audience within the beginning. -Vaping Industry in Korea – this may be a smaller market but with all the Vape stores shooting up in Seoul, CBD oils are going to be one among the highest sellers here. -K-Beauty Industry – This industry will have the most important potential. K-Beauty products like gels, creams, and sprays with CBD are going to be ready to be applied on to the skin.


There are many global skincare companies finding great success with their CBD beauty products. K-Beauty which is that the leader within the global skincare industry are going to be wanting to incorporate CBD into their future lines.

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