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Importing medicines for personal use in the form of consignments





  • : Added DMHA to the list of subtances that are considered medical products. Added information about phenibut and kratom being classified as narcotics since december 2023

Postal consignments containing medicinal products from abroad are not allowed and may be stopped by Norwegian Customs. The strict regulation aims to prevent incorrect use and protect consumers from illegal medicinal products.

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    ​​​​Importing medicinal products by post is prohibited

    Both non-prescription (over-the-counter) and prescription medicinal products may be stopped. Even if you have been given a prescription by a Norwegian doctor, it does not entitle you to purchase a corresponding medicine from abroad. Remember that a product may be considered medicinal in Norway even if it is not considered to be one in the country from which the product is being imported. Illegally imported medicines may be confiscated and destroyed by Norwegian Customs.

    Regulations: Section 3-2 of the Regulation on manufacture and import of medicinal products.

    Approved Norwegian online pharmacies

    There are approved Norwegian online pharmacies which send both non-prescription and prescription medicines by post.

    Criminal liability

    In the case of illegal imports, you may be reported to the police (depending on the severity of the offence). You may be reported for a breach of the Medicinal Products Act, Section 31, or the Penal Code, Section 231 and 232 (narcotic substances) or Section 234 and 235 (doping agents).

    No compensation

    Anyone who imports products has a responsibility to be aware of the regulations applicable to the import of goods and services and can therefore not expect to get any money back if Norwegian Customs stop an illegally imported product.

    Be careful about what you order online

    Many products which are available from foreign websites are advertised as dietary supplements or cosmetics. You should be aware that the Norwegian authorities have not necessarily assessed whether such products are safe to use. If you order such products, you bear much of the risk associated with their import and use.

    Many foreign online pharmacies operate illegally. There is a considerable risk that the medicines that they sell are counterfeit and do not contain what is stated on the packaging. The doses may be either too low, with the desired effect not achieved, or too high, with the resultant risk of severe side effects.

    Read more about the dangers of buying medicines online at

    What may be stopped by Norwegian Customs?​

    Importing medicinal products for personal use is not allowed. However, the boundary between medicinal products and other products can be hard to understand.

    The following section presents some guidelines and advice for assessing whether a product is allowed to import.

    Vitamins and minerals
    Customs do not stop vitamins and minerals if they are for personal use, are for oral consumption and are not marketed to treat illness.
    Private importation of vitamins for injection is not allowed.
    For import of vitamins for resale, please contact the Norwegian food authority (Mattilsynet).

    Private individuals are not permitted to import poisonous herbs, herbs containing narcotic substances or herbs with strong effects or health risks. There is no comprehensive list of such herbs, but below is a list of herbs that are not allowed for import, based on the criteria cited above.

    If a herb or product is not included in this list, you must assess its safety and legality yourself by reading the classification criteria or sending an email to  

    Products marketed as "herbal medicine" or "traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) are considered medical products, based on the marketing of the products. ​

    For questions about food supplements, please contact Mattilsynet. 

    List of poisonous herbs, herbs with narcotic substances, strong effects or otherwise not allowed to import (Updated 07.12.2020):

    Latin name/ Scientific name Norwegian name English names/other names


    Artemisia absinthium


    Acacia rigidula/

    Acacia Vachella/

    Acacia Berlandieri/

    Acacia Senegalia




    Senegalia berlandieri

    Achyrantes bidentata ​Ox knee, niu xi
    Aconitum napellus Venusvogn, Storhjelm Aconite, Monkshood
    Aconitum septentrionale Tyrihjelm Scandinavian Monkshood
    Aconitum-species Akonitum-arter Aconite
    Acorus Calamus


    Sweet flag
    Adonis vernalis Våradonis Pheasant's eye
    Amanita muscaria Fluesopp Fly agaric
    Ammi visnaga Tannstikke Toothpick-plant, Khella

    Anacyclus pyrethrum

    synonym Anthemis pyrethrum.

    Pyrethrumrot, Bertam Spanish chamomile, Pellitory
    Anadenanther-species   Yopo
    Anagallis arvensis Nonsblom Scarlet pimpernel
    Anamirta cocculus   Levant Berry
    Annona muricata
    Aphanizomenon flos-aquae AFA-alge Blue-Green Algae
    Areca catechu/semen Betelnøtt, Arekanøtt Betel nut
    Argyreia Nervosa/ Argyeria Speciosa   Elephant creeper, hawaiian baby woodrose, wolly morning glory
    Aristolochia species Holurt arter  
    Artemisia cina   Santonica, Levant wormseed
    Asarum europaeum Hasselurt Hazelwort, Wild ginger, Asarabacca
    Atropa belladonna Belladonnaurt  
    ​Azadirachta indica ​Neem  

    Banisteriopsis caapi

    Banisteriopsis muricata
    Baptisia tinctoria Vill indigo Yellow false indigo, Horseflyweed
    Bryonia alba Svartgallbær White bryony, Wild hop
    Buxus sempervirens Buksbom Boxwood
    Caladium seguinum (Dieffenbachia seguine)   Dumbcane

    Calea Zacatechichi


    Cephaelis ipecacuanha (Uragoga ipecacuanha)

     Brekkrot, Ipekakuanha


    Brazil Root, Ipecac Syrup

    Chinae cortex

    (se Cinchonae cortex)

    Cinae flos Ormefrø, Cina, Artemisia cina Levant wormwood, Chamomile–leaved artemisia
    Claviceps purpurea Meldrøye, Sekale Ergot/ Ergot of rye, St. Antony's fire
    Clematis vitalba Klematis, tysk Traveler's Joy, Old Man's Beard

    Colchicum autumnale/ Speciosum/ vernum

    Tidløs Autumn Crocus, Wild Saffron
    Conium maculatum Skarntyde, Giftkjeks Hemlock
    Consolida regalis  Ridderspore Delphinium
    Convallaria majalis Liljekonvall Lily-of-the-Valley


    Convolvulus arvensis

    Åkervindel  Field bindweed
    Cynoglossum officinale Hundetunge Hound's Tongue
    Cytisus scoparius  Gyvel Scotch broom
    Datura-species Piggeple, Stramonium Jimson weed, Devil's snare
    Digitalis purpurea og lanata Revebjelle, Digitalis Foxglove
    Dryopteris filix-mas Ormetelg Male fern
    Escholtzia californica Kaliforniavalmue​ California poppy​
    Euphorbia cyparissias Vortemelk, sypress Cypress spurge
    Euphorbia resinifera   Resin spurge
    Filicis rhizoma Bregnerot  
    Fritillaria meleagris Rutelilje Snake's head
    Fritillaria verticillata    
    Fumara officinalis Jordrøyk​ Common fumitory, Earth-smoke​
    Galega officinalis  Geitvikke Goat's Rue
    Gelsemium sempervirens, Jasmin, gul False Jasmine

    Glecoma  hederacea

    Nepeta Glecoma /Hederacea

     Korsknapp Ground ivy, the aerial parts of Glechoma hederacea
    Gynura divaricata    
    Helleborus niger Nyserot, sort Black Hellebore
    Hyoscyamus niger Villrot, Bulmeurt Henbane, Stinking nightshade
    Hypericum perforatum Johannesurt, Prikkperikum  
    Ipecacuanhae radix Brekkrot, Ipekakuanharot


    Ipomoea hederacea

      Mexican Scammony Root
    Ipomoea reptans Morning Glory  
    Juniperus sabina Sevenbom, Sabina Savin Tops

    Lophophora Williamsii

    Ma Huang Ephedra arter  
    Mallotus philippinensis Kamalatre  

    Mandragora officinarum,

    Mandragora vernalis

    Satans eple Alrune Mandragora, (European) Mandrake
    Melia azadirachta fructus Kinabær fra nimtre/ Nimtre

    Chinaberry tree, Neem friut, Neem Tree, Pride of China

    Menispermum canadense   Moonseed = Tinospora Cordifolia

    Mimosa hostilis/ tenuiflora


    Mitragyna/Nauclea speciosa

    Kratom Mitragynine
    Nerium oleander Oleander  
    Nucis vomicae semen Revekake, Nux vomica  
    Nymphaea Caerula

     Blå lotus

    Sacred blue lilly, Blue lotus

    Panaeolus species Panaeolus arter  
    Panaeolus cyanescens ​Blånende flekkskivesopp Blue meanie​
    Pausinystalia yohimbe Johimbe Yohimbe, Yohimbin
    Physostigma venenosum Kalabarbønne Calabar Bean
    Phytolacca americana, Phytolacca decandra Poke, Kermesbær Pokeweed
    Pilocarpus-species  Pilocarpus-arter Jaborandi (=Pilocarpus microphyllus)
    Piper methysticum Kawa-Kawa, Kava  
    Podophyllum hexandrum Amerikansk Podofyllum  Podophyllum, Mandrake
    Podophyllum peltatum Mandrake​ ​American Mandrake
    Polygonatum officinale (= odoratum) Kantkonvall Solomon's seal
    Polygonum multiflora ​He Shou Wu​

    Psychotria Viridis

    Rauvolfia serpentina  Indian Snakeroot Rauwolfia Serpentine, Snakewood
    Rauvolfia Vomitoria  

     African Snakeroot, Serpent Wood

    Rhododendron ferrugineum    Rusty-leaved   Rhododendron
    Rhododendron-species Alperose-arter  

    Rhus toxicodendron (alsoToxicodendron vernix)

    Toxicodendron radicans, synonym Rhus radicans

      Poison Ivy

    Ricinus communis semen,

    Ricinus sanguines

    Ricinusfrø Castor bean
    Sabadillae semen/ Schoenocaulon Officinale Sabadillefrø/Sabadille  
    Salvia divinorum   Sage of the diviners
    Sanguinaria canadensis Blodrot Bloodroot
    Sassafras albidum (= officinale) Sassafras  
    Scilla maritima Strandløk (Sea) squill, Squilla
    ​Scillae bulbus
    ​Sceletium tortuosum ​Kanna
    Scutellaria baicalensis    
    Scutellaria lateriflora Skullcap​
    Secale cornutum Sekale, Meldrøye​ Ergot​
    Senecio jacobaea Landøyda Tansy ragwort
    Senecio vulgaris Åkersvineblom Groundsel
    Senecio-species Svineblomslekta  
    Sida cordifolia   Flannel weed
    Solanum dulcamara Slyngsøtvier Bittersweet nightshade
    Solanum nigrum Svartsøtvier European black nightshade, petty morel
    Solanum paniculatum Jurubeba  
    Stramonii folium Stramoniumblad, piggepleblad​ Thorn apple​
    Strophantus–species Strofantus  
    Strychnos nux-vomica Stryknintre  Nux Vomica
    Tabernanthe iboga Svart klaseormdrue (Iboga), Rotbark Iboga
    Teucrium scorodonia Firtann Wood Sage
    Thuja occidentalis Tuja Northern white-cedar, Thuja
    Toxicodendron vernix (Rhus toxicodendron)   Poison sumac
    Trichocereus peruvianus  

     Peruvian Torch

    Valeriana mexicana Valeriane, meksikansk  
    Valeriana wallichii Valeriane, indisk  
    Veratrum album Nyserot European white hellebore
    Vinca minor Gravmyrt Lesser periwinkle
    Xanthium strumarium Grønnkrokfrø Common cocklebur
    Food supplements

    ​Food supplements containing only vitamins, minerals, and herbs (not on the list above) are generally allowed to be imported for private use. This only applies if the product is not marketed as a medicinal product or with medicinal claims. Many foreign websites sell "supplements" that have substances in them regarded as medicinal in Norway. These products may be illegal to import and harmful to use. There are many unserious actors selling health products. Helsenorge has a website (in Norwegian) ​with some guidelines regarding buying health products online.

    Products that are considered medicinal products

    A product can be classified as medicine either by its effects (functionally medicinal) or presented with medicinal claims (medicine by presentation) and intended for human or animal use.

    If a substance found in a product, is marketed as medicine in Norway or another country, it will generally be regarded as a medicinal product, and stopped at customs. 

    You can read more about what makes a product classified as medicine and read a list of what makes something a medicinal product. We also have a list of illegal herbs(above), narcotics (in Norwegian) and doping products (in Norwegian).​

    Some products may be marketed as cosmetics or food supplements abroad but contain substances or make claims that make the products classified as medicines in Norway. Therefore, even if something is labelled "cosmetics" or "food supplements", it does not mean that these products are considered as such in Norway.

    There are also many products sold containing "natural" plant-derived substances. Whether or not a substance is "natural" or "synthetic" does not affect the classification of the substance and the product may still be considered a pharmaceutical product. These products may therefore not be imported, as private import of medicinal products is not allowed. 

    For example, products containing plant progesterone, a kind of progesterone, will still be considered medicinal products, since progesterone is a medicinal substance.

    Exceptions - substances which will not be stopped

    Some substances can be considered to be medicinal in one product, but not in another. Examples of such substances are:

    • ​​betaine
    • papain
    • bromelain
    • alpha lipoic acid
    • omega-3 fatty acids
    • tryptophan
    • glucosamine
    • caffeine
    • melatonin (products that contain more than 1 mg/daily dose is generally medicinal in Norway)

    Products containing these substances will normally not be stopped by Norwegian Customs if they are not being marketed as medicinal products.

    If you have any questions about food supplements, please direct your questions to Mattilsynet, the Norwegian Food Safety Authority.

    Substances that will be stopped in customs

    Many substances are not ingredients in market medicinal products, but are still powerful and therefore not allowed for private import. There is no conclusive list of these substances. If a website claims that a product can heal or alleviate a specific illness or have a significant effect on your physiology, this might point toward the product being considered a medicine. The product may therefore not be allowed to import. Examples of such substances are:

    • Huperzine a
    • DMAA
    • DMHA (Octodrine)
    • Higenamine
    • Hordenine

    Phenibut and Kratom were previously considered medical products but are since December 2023 classified as narcotics. Shipments containing phenibut or kratom could result in prosecution by the police.

    Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators (SARMs)

    SARMs are a group of substances that selectively bind to androgen receptors in different parts of the body. The binding stimulates anabolic effects. SARMs are considered medicinal products and are therefore not allowed to import. Examples of such substances are Ostarine(Mk-2866), Ligandrol (LGD-4033), RAD140(Testolone).


    Nootropics describe a multitude of substances meant to improve cognition. Many of these substances are marketed as "smart drugs" that improve concentration and learning. These substances are not allowed to import by post, and packages containing nootropics will be stopped by customs. This may also apply to substances marketed as nootropics that may not otherwise fit the description.

    Examples of nootropic substances:

    • Atomoxetine
    • Piracetam
    • Aniracetam
    • Modafinil
    As well as many others. ​
    CBD (cannabidiol)

    Products derived from the cannabis plant are, regardless of THC content, considered narcotics in Norway. Therefore, these products can not be imported for personal use.

    CBD is one of many substances found in the cannabis plant and has little or no intoxicating effect in itself. But, CBD products often contain residues of the narcotic substance THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), even though the list of content​s claims that the product contains no THC. 

    The presence of THC means that the product will be considered to be a narcotic and may therefore not be imported privately. There are currently one approved medicine containing only CBD on the Norwegian market (Epidyolex​)​.

    If you have any questions regarding the medicinal use of CBD you need to speak to your doctor. Your doctor can apply for exemption from the requirement for approval for such medicines, and the pharmacy will order the medicine for you. Exemption from approval does not give entitlement to private importation.

    If the rules regarding CBD chan​ge, we will update our website. We also have (in Norwegian) an expanded section of our website on CBD for businesses that want to import or sell CBD products.

    Homoeopathic medicines

    ​Privately imported homoeopathic medicines (except for injectable products) will not be stopped in customs if shipped from an EU/EEA country.​

    Medicinal products for animals

    Importing medicinal products for animals is not allowed. If your animal needs medical treatment, talk to your veterinarian. 

    Electronic cigarettes

    ​Private import of electronic cigarettes is only allowed from EU/EEA countries. Import is only allowed for people who want to quit smoking. You need to be able to document this by a doctor's note or prescription. Import may not exceed three months of use. 

    The laws regarding electronic cigarettes are about to change and will probably be implemented in 2023. ​
    We cannot carry out an advance assessment of whether or not a product is likely to be stopped by Norwegian Customs - why is that?
    There are thousands of health and wellness products for sale on foreign websites. Unfortunately, it is often difficult to obtain accurate information concerning the substances these products contain. The Norwegian authorities do not have the resources to help private individuals assess these products but prioritize ensuring that products sold in Norway are safe to use. 
    For information on whether or not a product is allowed to import, see the sections above. 

    My package has been stopped - why?

    To request an explanation of why Norwegian Customs have stopped your package, please send an e-mail with a list of:

    • the product(s) contained in the consignment
    • if possible, a link to online information about the product(s)
    • Copy of the notification letter from customs

    Send your e-mail to We will assess whether the package has been stopped by mistake and reply to you before the package is returned or destroyed.

    If possible, you should send your email as soon as possible after getting the letter from customs (varselbrev). This gives us time to request any additional necessary information and communicate with customs and the courier. 

    We may only give an opinion on the content after the package has been inspected by Norwegian Customs. This is because we must assess the actual content of the package in collaboration with Norwegian Customs.

    Import permits in special cases

    In some cases, the Norwegian Medical Products Agency may permit imports of medicinal products for personal use if they are vital to the importer's health. For example, this could apply to people who:

    • Are on holiday or staying temporarily in Norway
    • Have recently arrived in Norway and are not yet registered with a doctor
    • Have started treatment abroad and are being sent medicinal products which are necessary to complete the treatment

    The Medicines agency cannot give import permits to medicines containing narcotic substances, or doping agents. Please do not send sensitive medical information in your email. However, we do require information about the contents of the shipment and a reason for why you feel you should get an import permit, based on the criteria listed above. 

    How do I apply for an import permit?

    We do not issue import permits or evaluate the content until Norwegian Customs have inspected the package. This is because we must assess the actual contents of the package in collaboration with Customs. 

    If customs stop a package, the courier company will send you a notification alongside a letter (varselbrev).

    Upon receiving this letter, send an email to your courier with a copy to For the Norwegian postal service, this email address is The courier, not customs or the medicines agency, has the package until it is destroyed or delivered. 

    In the email, describe the case and supply the necessary documentation:

    • A copy of the letter you received (varselbrev)
    • A short explanation of why you are eligible for an import permit (without unnecessary personal information) 
    • Medical documentation, such as prescriptions or doctor's notes.

    The courier company will register your case and forward it to NOMA for evaluation. Please make contact as early as possible in the process to avoid the destruction of your product. Because of administration and postage, the delivery of your package will be delayed while the case is being sorted out. The importer is personally responsible for any private import of medicines and any unintended side effects from using these products. NOMA only assures the quality of officially approved medicines in Norway. 

    Medicinal products which are not available in Norway

    The Norwegian Medical Products Agency does not usually issue import permits to private individuals if the argument is that the medicinal product is not available in Norway. However, your doctor can apply for exemption from the requirement for approval for such medicines ("godkjenningsfritak"), and the pharmacy will provide you with the medicinal product. Godkjenningsfritak does not grant permission to import the medicines privately. 

    Contact us

    Team for private import

    +47 22 89 77 00