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Cannabis laws in Estonia

Cannabis laws in Estonia

Table of contents

Medical: legal, no program
Recreational: illegal (largely decriminalized) 

Medical marijuana is legal in Estonia, but the program is limited and only includes cannabinoid-based medications. Cannabis remains illegal in the country for recreational purposes, but possession is typically punished by a simple fine.

Cannabis in Estonia 

Cannabis is the most popular illicit drug in Estonia, with an estimated 13% of young adults and teens consuming the plant in some form. Estonia is #28 on the top 30 list of cannabis-consuming countries in the world. Nonetheless, a 2021 statement by the Minister of Interior stated that Estonia was not yet ready to legalize any drugs, including cannabis. 

Possible penalties

Recreational cannabis is illegal in Estonia but is generally decriminalized. Using, buying, or possessing small amounts of cannabis, usually defined as 7.5 grams or less, is a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine between €800-1,200. You can still be arrested, although this is less common. If you have medical cannabis but are stopped by the police without your prescription, you can still face fines. 

Selling, transporting, trafficking, or possessing with intent to sell large amounts of cannabis is still a criminal charge, punishable by up to three years in jail. This jail time can increase based on aggravating circumstances, like violence and organized crime. 

Since 2011, treatment may be offered to drug-dependent offenders as an alternative to prison only if the offender is sentenced to imprisonment for six months to two years and agrees to undergo the treatment course.

Medical marijuana in Estonia 

Medical cannabis is legal in Estonia, with unconfirmed reports dating back to 2005. There is no national cannabis program; patients can only access cannabinoid-based medications, not the plant itself. 

Prescriptions are issued on a case-by-case basis by the Ministry of Social Affairs. In a written statement to The Cannigma, a representative from the Ministry said, “If, in the opinion of the doctor, the use of cannabis or cannabinoids is indicated for the treatment of the patient’s condition (if the patient has a disease for which cannabis is effective and the potential side effects of cannabis are acceptable), the use of such drugs is possible for Estonian patients.” 

Reports state that between 2005 and 2016, only one patient was prescribed a cannabinoid medicine. The organization Ravikanep is pushing to expand medical cannabis access. 

CBD regulations

CBD is legal in Estonia as long as it contains 0.2% THC or less. In September 2022, the country adopted the new EU guidelines that increased the legal THC limit in hemp plants from 0.2% to 0.3%. Hemp is a historical plant in Estonia, but cultivation came to a standstill in the mid-20th century. Today the industry is growing again, with over 6,800 hectares (16,000 acres) under cultivation. 

As a member of the EU, Estonia is beholden to the 2020 EU Court ruling that determined CBD and its products were not narcotics, so “a country of the European Union cannot prohibit the marketing of cannabidiol legally produced in another member state.”

Can you grow your own weed?

No, you cannot legally grow cannabis plants in Estonia. Industrial hemp cultivation is legal with a license from the government.

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