Absinthe was prohibited in lots of countries around the world in early 1900s because of worries about its safety. Absinthe is actually a strong liquor having an anise taste which is served diluted with water to cause the drink to absinthethujone louche.
One of the key ingredients of Absinthe is the herb wormwood which contains a chemical called thujone. Thujone was thought to be a lot like THC in the drug cannabis also to be psychoactive. The medical occupation and prohibitionists in nineteenth century France were convinced that Absinthe was greater than an intoxicant, it was a dangerous drug completely unlike other alcohol based drinks. The government listened to these claims and were concerned about growing excessive drinking in France hence they restricted Absinthe in 1915. It grew to become a crime to buy or sell Absinthe, you could get into issues with the police if you distilled it illegally.
Studies have since shown Absinthe to become perfectly safe, as safe as any strong alcohol. Absinthe only contains small quantities of thujone and indeed insufficient to cause any harmful effects. It’s easy to get drunk on Absinthe though and, because Absinthe consists of herbs of both a sedative and stimulant nature, it’s a completely different drunkenness!
Absinthe was legalized in several countries within the 1980s onwards depending on its thujone content. Bottles of Absinthe is found online or even in liquor shops or make your own from top-quality essences like those from AbsintheKit.com.
In what countries is Absinthe legal right now?
United States – A number of brands of Absinthe were accepted for selling in the US in 2007 after being banned since 1912. Brands like “Lucid” have become legal for their low thujone content. The USA law permits “thujone free” beverages to be sold but because of US test procedures, Absinthes with fewer than 10 ppm of thujone (below 10mg per liter) count as thujone free.
The EU (European Union) – Absinthe was prohibited in several European countries in early 1900s but was legalized within the EU in 1988. There is a regulation with regards to thujone content in drinks while in the EU. Up to 10mg/kg of thujone is permitted in alcohol with more than 25% alcohol by volume, and approximately 35mg/kg in alcohol tagged “bitters”.
Australia – Bitters may have a thujone content of approximately 35mg/kg and other beverages can contain approximately 10mg/kg. Absinthe is legal on sale in the event it complies with the law.
Brazil – Brazilian law states that Absinthe needs to have less than 55% alcohol by volume and comprise 10mg/kg of thujone or less.
Canada – The Canadian provinces each have their very own liquor boards to create laws concerning alcohol. Many provinces never allow any thujone containing alcohol to be sold but Absinthe is legal in British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Ontario and Quebec. Quebec and Ontario legislate that Absinthe with as much as 10mg/kg thujone could be legally sold and there aren’t any limits regarding thujone in British Columbia.
Czech Republic – Absinthe is actually a Czech tradition and it has never been prohibited in the Czech Republic.
France – La Fee Verte or The Green Fairy (Absinthe) was famously banned in 1915. Since 1988 Absinthe has become legal in France so long as it isn’t labeled Absinthe but is tagged “spiritueux Ã base de plantes d’absinthe”. France additionally regulates the chemical substance fenchone that is present in fennel so beverages must contain 5mg/liter or a smaller amount of fenchone. A lot of distillers make low fenchone Absinthes specifically for the French market.
Hungary – In 2004 Hungarian law made Absinthe legal.
Israel – Absinthe can be sold in Israel.
Ireland – Absinthe can be shipped to the country for private utilization but Absinthe containing thujone is often illegal.
Netherlands – In 2004 Absinthe was made legal provided that it complies with the EU legislation.
New Zealand – Absinthe is legal in New Zealand.
Poland – Absinthe looks like it’s illegal in Poland.
Portugal – Like Spain, Absinthe was not ever restricted in Portugal.
Russia – Russia allows Absinthe to be traded, even high thujone Absinthe as much as 75mg/kg thujone.
Serbia – Serbia does not allow Absinthe above 50% abv or made up of thujone to be sold.
South Africa – In 2005 Absinthe was made legal.
Spain – Absinthe never was restricted in Spain where it is known as Absenta.
Sweden – Sweden makes it possible for Absinthe complying with EU legislation to be sold as long as it is labeled as containing wormwood.
Switzerland – Absinthe was eventually legalized in 2005 in Switzerland, above 90 years after it was banned.
Turkey – Thujone containing Absinthe is illegal.
UK – The UK never restricted Absinthe. Absinthe must abide by EU legislation.
So, the reply to the question “In what countries is Absinthe legal?” is that it is now legal in many countries where it had been previously popular.