Following the recent delisting of almost all parts of the hemp plant from Thailand’s list of prohibited narcotics (see here for further details), the Ministry of Public Health has issued a notification allowing hemp to be used in cosmetics. Prior to this development, this use of hemp (whether from natural or synthetic sources) was not allowed, as it fell under the definition of narcotics under the Notification Re: Ingredients Not Allowed for Use in Cosmetics B.E. 2559 (2016).

Under the Ministerial Notification Re: Use of Hemp in Cosmetics B.E. 2564 (2021), which was published in the Government Gazette on January 11, 2021, domestic manufacturers are now allowed to produce cosmetics containing hemp seed oil or hemp seed extract, provided the cosmetics do not have a THC level exceeding 0.2% by weight.

To register such products with the Thai FDA, applicants must submit a certificate of analysis, safety data sheet, and label for the agency’s evaluation. The timeline for approval of the registration (notification) of a cosmetic containing hemp seed oil or hemp seed extract is three business days. The applicant (i.e., manufacturer or toll manufacturer) must declare the amount of hemp seed extract or hemp seed oil used in the cosmetic in their notification application. Cosmetics must not use a name for the product that evokes an association with hemp flowers or narcotics, and the name of the product must be within the scope of cosmetics. For example, names containing “inflorescence,” “flower,” “CBD,” “THC” or similar will not be allowed.

It should also be noted that Thailand does not yet allow the importation of cosmetics containing hemp seeds or hemp seed extract, and this regulation only applies to domestically produced hemp products—a business currently restricted to individuals or companies with Thai nationality.

For more details on this development, or on any aspect of hemp and cannabis regulations in Thailand, please contact Tilleke & Gibbins at bangkok@tilleke.com.