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Is Snus Legal in the UK?

Is Snus Legal in the UK?

Short answer: Snus is illegal in the UK, however, it is legal to consume it and to buy tobacco free snus also known as nicotine pouches.

However, you probably want a more detailed insight into the use of snus and nicotine pouches.

Snus is a traditional Scandinavian tobacco product that is smokeless. It comes in either portioned or loose varieties and is used by placing the pouch/pinch between the gum and upper lip until the effects wear off. It has been popular in Scandinavia for its relatively high nicotine content and quick absorption. However, its legality is rather confusing

Here’s all you need to know about the legalities surrounding tobacco snus and the potential alternatives to Snus tobacco pouches.



Is Snus Illegal in Europe?

The sale of snus has been illegal in the European Union (EU) since 1992, with the exception of Sweden - where it has been popular since the 1800s.

It is prohibited as part of the European Union's Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) of 1992, which was put in place around the time the World Health Organization (WHO) concluded that snus was carcinogenic (mainly due to its tobacco content). The ban was also, in part, put in place due to forceful attempts to introduce smokeless tobacco into the UK market by US manufacturers including the British American Tobacco and the United States Smokeless Tobacco Company.

TPD regulations specifically mention moist snuff and nasal snuff, as well as chewing tobacco.

Is Snus Illegal in the UK?

It is illegal to buy and sell snus in the UK due to the 1992 EU tobacco products directive, which is why you will not find tobacco snus products for sale in shops or online. However, it is legal (if you are over the age of 18) to possess and use snus in the UK.

Why is Snus illegal in the UK?

The biggest reason the ban started was because of the forceful marketing from US manufacturers trying to introduce snus to the UK market. However, the health authorities in the UK also argue that snus may cause mouth cancer and pose other potential health risks, although many have been disputed. Nevertheless, these combined issues are the main reasons why snus is illegal in the UK.

The use of snus by Premier League and Women's Super League players has been heavily documented over the past two or three years, raising several questions like "Is snus legal?" and "Is snus legal in the UK for professional athletes?"

While there is little scientific research into the impact of snus in sports, some believe it could be giving footballers a perceived increase in alertness and concentration, which is likely to attract competitive athletes. They also enjoy the element of inconspicuousness of having the pouch placed inside the upper lip.

As for whether snus is legal in football: the Footballers Association (FA) have not explicitly banned the use of snus, but they are monitoring the situation. However, it should be noted that athletes are governed by the same UK law, meaning they are not allowed to buy or sell snus in the UK.

Are All Smokeless Tobacco Products Banned in the UK?

When looking for a smokeless tobacco product, consumers will be met with a wide range of products including ground tobacco, chewing tobacco, and dipping tobacco.

Dipping tobacco is not permitted in the UK while chewing tobacco is also prohibited by the Tobacco for Oral Use (Safety) Regulations 1992. However, while you cannot buy or sell these products in the UK, possession is not a violation.

Will Snus Become Legalised in the UK?

The prohibition of snus has been heavily questioned in other European countries in recent times, with many arguing that it is a safer form of tobacco use. While the UK currently follows the same regulations as the European Union directive, it is conceivable that the UK law could change at some point.

It doesn’t currently seem to be one of the UK government’s priorities. However, the tobacco industry is both one of the country’s largest sectors and a steadily declining industry. The growing popularity of tobacco free snus nicotine pouches has resulted in a growing demand for a smokeless nicotine product too. It could potentially lead to legislation updates.

Increased scientific research into the health considerations, along with the impact that snus has had on public health and smoking rates in Sweden, could also influence subsequent regulations if the government deems snus to be a safe alternative to traditional tobacco products sold in the UK.

What About Nicotine Pouches and Tobacco Free Snus?

While tobacco snus is not permitted for sale in the UK as it is a smokeless tobacco product, buying tobacco free snus and nicotine pouches is legal. Flavoured tobacco free snus is available from some of the biggest manufacturers including 4nx, Avant, Elf Bar, Nordic Spirit, Velo, and more.

Snus nicotine pouches that do not contain tobacco are fully legal in the UK, making them an ideal way to consume snus. They are commonly sold in packs of 20 pouches with flavours ranging from mint to citrus fruits and coffee.

Before purchasing a nicotine pouch, though, it's vital that you opt for reliable products like Velo nicotine pouches. As well as seeking brands you can rely on, you must buy snus from a reliable retailer. Here at Northerner, we only sell legal snus nicotine pouches from the biggest names in the sector.

If you're interested in buying nicotine pouches or snus in the UK, explore our range of different brands to find the best tobacco free product for you.

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