Australian Govt Dept of Health: Office of Drug Control Updates Hemp Products Importation Guidelines

5 July 2019

For information on medicinal cannabis refer to ourFAQ.

With the recent changes to theFood Standardcertain hemp seed products are now permitted for human consumption. It is important to be aware that only the seeds of the hemp plant can be used for human consumption – extracts from the remainder of the plant are considered a drug.

In support of this change the Department of Health has amended controls under theCustoms (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956(PI regulations) to allow specific hemp seed and fibre products to be imported without requiring a licence and permit under the import regulation. The PI regulations may be found atCustoms (Prohibited Imports) (Importation of Hemp Seeds and Hemp Derived Products) Approval 2018.

Substances & Products which may be imported without a licence and permit under the PI Regulations

NOTE: Review thedefinitionsbelow when reading this information.


  • It is important that the products you importdo not exceedthe stated thresholds for cannabinoids. The Australian Border Force regularly test hemp shipments and products, and you could potentially face serious charges if you are found to be importing a cannabis based product that is not covered by this instrument.
  • The Food Standard and state/territory laws may have different thresholds for cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol for hemp and foods. You must ensure your products comply with the Food Standard if importing for human consumption.

You may import the followingsubstanceswithout import permission under the PI Regulations:

  • Hulled hemp seeds
  • Hemp seed meal
  • Hemp fibre
  • Hemp seed oil if:
    • the total cannabidiol (CBD) content of the hemp seed oil is0.0075%(75mg/kg) or less, and
    • the total tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content of the oil is0.005%(50mg/kg) or less

You may import the followingproductswithout import permission under the PI Regulations

  • Products contain hulled hemp seeds, derived from hemps, and/or hemp seed oil provided that:
    • They do not contain another drug
    • They do not contain any part (or extracts) of the cannabis/hemp plant (excluding extracts made from the hemp seeds)
    • The total cannabidiol (CBD) content is0.0075%(75 mg/kg) or less, and
    • The total tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content is less0.005%(50 mg/kg) or less.


A capsule containing 1000mg of hemp seed oil would need to containless than0.075 mg of CBD


drughas the same meaning as in subregulation 5(20) of the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956.

hemp fibremeans the fibre of a plant of the genus Cannabis but does not include the leaves, seeds or flowers of the plant.

hemp seed mealmeans the meal or flour obtained from the grinding or milling of hemp seeds.

hemp seed oilmeans the oil obtained by cold expression from ripened hemp seeds.

hemp seedsmeans the seeds from a plant of the genus Cannabis if the leaves and flowering heads of the plant do not contain more than 1% total tetrahydrocannabinol content.

hulled hemp seedsmeans hemps seeds that have had their outer coat or hull removed.

total cannabidiol contentmeans the total amount of cannabidiol and cannabidiolic acid.

total tetrahydrocannabinol contentmeans the total amount of delta‑9‑tetrahydrocannabinol and delta‑9‑tetrahydrocannabinolic acid.

unhulled hemp seedsmeans hemp seeds that are not hulled hemp seeds.


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