Is Snus Legal in the UK in 2024?

Is Snus Legal in the UK in 2024?

Snus, a smokeless tobacco product, is widely consumed in various countries, including Sweden and the United States. 

In the United Kingdom, there is ongoing curiosity about the legal status of this product, particularly among those seeking brands such as Siberia Snus.

Navigating the intricate regulations concerning snus legality in the UK poses challenges.

This article aims to consolidate pertinent information and address queries related to snus and its standing in the UK, encompassing EU regulations and potential future changes in the UK. Snus is also a term commonly used for 'nicotine pouches' which is 100% legal in the United Kingdom and that is what we sell.

Understanding Snus

Snus, a smokeless tobacco product prevalent in America and Sweden, distinguishes itself from nicotine pouches—a common source of confusion.

The link between the two distinct products is explored in the article "Snus Vs Nicotine Pouches," with a key disparity being that Snus contains tobacco, whereas nicotine pouches do not.

Notably, the term "VELO snus" inaccurately refers to "VELO nicotine pouches." Similar confusion arises with other tobacco-free, all-white brands like Siberia All-white and Killa, often sought as "Siberia Snus" or "Killa Snus" in the UK.

Awareness is crucial, as consumers may unknowingly acquire nicotine pouches, compliant with regulations, instead of tobacco pouches.

Purchasing Snus in the UK

In brief, purchasing or selling snus (tobacco pouches) is prohibited in the UK. However, legal usage of snus is permissible for individuals aged 18 and above. Distinctly, nicotine pouches (tobacco-free portions) are legally available in the UK, contributing to the occasional confusion between the two products.

The Legality of Snus in the UK

The prohibition of Snus in the UK traces back to the European Union's Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) of 1992.

This directive mandated member states to forbid the marketing of oral tobacco, categorizing snus and moist snuff while excluding chewing tobacco and nasal snuff.

The ban stemmed from aggressive marketing strategies by British American Tobacco and the United States Smokeless Tobacco Company, particularly targeting university students, leading to its sale prohibition to minors in 1986 across the EU.

Snus Legality in Other European Countries

In Sweden, where snus has deep cultural roots since the 1800s, an exemption from the TPD allows the legal use of snus. Sweden's unique stance on the matter stems from its historical association with snus, making it the only EU country exempt from the ban.

Future Legalization Prospects in the UK

Predicting changes in snus legality, particularly in the UK, remains uncertain. Several factors may influence potential shifts in regulations:

  1. Health Considerations and Research: Future studies highlighting reduced risks compared to other tobacco products may impact perceptions.
  2. Global Perspectives: Examining Sweden's experience with snus and its impact on cigarette smoking rates may influence the UK's stance.
  3. Policy Revisions: Changes in the UK government's priorities could impact snus regulations.

While these points are speculative, the current outlook suggests that snus legalization in the UK is unlikely in the near future. Despite post-Brexit reassessments, no substantial changes have materialized, tempering expectations for imminent shifts in snus legality.

Back to blog