CBD in Japan

Japan’s CBD market is certainly on the rise, with many online retailers and brands appearing. This page includes all of our detailed full-length market and regulatory reports, as well as both business and regulatory briefings covering current updates from Japan.

A booming market hampered by cumbersome admin in Japan

CBD, both in plant-based and synthetic form, and CBD-infused products with no detectable level of THC are considered legal in Japan and are widely distributed in specialist stores, especially as oils, edibles and in e-liquid.

After a slow start, Japan’s CBD sector expanded rapidly, with the number of specialist shops growing, more vape and health shops, as well as the biggest discount retailer, now carrying CBD products.

However, according to industry stakeholders, licensing is overseen by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, yet the ministry told CBD-Intel it was not involved in the process. The licensing regime has had a negative impact on a once booming industry, drastically reducing the number of cultivators. New guidelines on import of CBD products impose strict and cumbersome administrative procedures to be met for anyone wanting to import CBD products into Japan.

Tokyo remains the major centre for CBD use in Japan – far outstripping other urban areas which in turn lead rural areas. 32% of respondents to CBD-Intel’s usage survey were from Tokyo. The next highest response level was from Hokkaido, Japan’s second largest island, at 9%.