We recently became aware of some police raids on CBD businesses in the UK. A CBD business called Uncle Herb was confirmed to have been raided early in April 2022, while another business, CBD Flower Shop, is rumoured to have had some disturbances by online cannabis communities.
We became aware of this situation after members of The Goods Discord Server began circulating Trustpilot reviews for both Uncle Herb and CBD Flower Shop that detailed delivery issues and a lack of customer service response from both companies. We decided to dig deeper to understand what is going on with these two companies, and if they are still operating.
Uncle Herb Raided
According to members of the now private r/ukhempflowers subreddit, Uncle Herb had actually been raided once a year or two ago. We are not sure what the outcome of that police interaction was, but they resurfaced soon after and continued to trade their products in the UK. From what we can tell, they are a reseller of CBD products, imported into the UK from countries in Europe and North America. Their product categories range from CBD distillate vape oils to hemp flowers.
First Wave Of Bad Reviews
The first signs of strange activity can be seen on their Trustpilot page around September - November, 2021. Customers left reviews saying that they were being scammed, having spent money on CBD only to be left out of pocket. One review, left by Ryan Brooks, reads:
“Terrible service placed an order a month ago still not received anything and can’t get in touch with anyone. Must be scamming everyone out of money.”
Short Spell Of Positive Reviews
Interestingly, by late December, it seemed as though they had resumed their service to fulfill some orders. The following positive review was left on December 24, 2021, “Ordered two 3.5s less than 48hrs ago and they just arrived. Props already for that. Herb came in nice packaging, looks and smokes great. Can be smoked by itself for medicinal purposes or sprinkled in with its thc counterpart for a smoother smoke. Very impressed. Shout out Uncle Herb.”
We are not sure why their service suddenly resumed. One thought could be that Uncle Herb was raided around September - November 2021, and did not have access to their assets to pack their orders. Perhaps their assets were released in December, 2021, allowing them to send out orders to paying customers? Unfortunately, we don’t know the full story - and things only went south in 2022.
Long Wave Of Bad Reviews
By Feb 3, 2022 Uncle Herb was faced with the first of many 1 star reviews. In scenes similar to what we can see from September - November 2021, people were calling the company out for “scamming” and failing to send out orders. The first bad review, written by Ivaylo Mihaylov, says “10 days after payment, nothing has been shipped. I emailed to ask 5 times and no response. How do I get my money back?”.
The most recent review, written 2 days ago, and 2 months after the first bad review in this new wave, gave us an explanation for what has been happening. In a review titled “Scamming bast*rds”, we are told:
“Scamming bast*rds. Thank god there’s people on here who have gave their details out. We can now take this matter to the police.Took my money. And she had the cheek to say, “Look all I can do is tell customers how to get a refund and the only way is to do a Chargeback I’m afraid. The police are holding the customers orders and our devices. I’ve been trying all week to get back into the account but I can’t. Please tell everyone again that they need to do a chargeback. I’m sorry I can’t refund people myself, there’s just no way for me to be able to do it.”
The details of the raid on Uncle Herb are unclear, however we can see that their customers have their grievances. With the lack of information, it is difficult to tell how much control the founders of Uncle Herb have on the situation. They may legitimately have no ability to remove their online store. We will continue to keep an eye on the relevant subreddits and discord communities to see if further information comes to light.
The CBD Flower Shop
We are unsure what exactly has happened to The CBD Flower Shop, however, rumours started floating around online UK cannabis communities when some customers stopped receiving their orders. They are an online and physical store, based out in Bournemouth and sell products ranging from CBD edibles to hemp flowers. They appear to resell CBD products that are sourced from countries found in Europe and North America. It appears as though the company has been forced to make some changes to their service that have been met with strong online backlash. We’ll try to break down the timeline of what exactly has happened with The CBD Flower Shop by taking a close look at recent Trustpilot reviews of their site.
Reduced Customer Service
In a lengthy review left in April, 2022, a customer named CJ mentioned how they had previously been a customer of the business, but had recently been unable to get in touch with the company regarding an incorrect product. Their customer service phone number was no longer active, so they attempted to resolve the issue via email, and apparently found the process to be lengthy, eventually getting their refund after a long wait.
We often see a correlation between a reduction in customer service - such as the loss of phone lines - and potential raids on CBD businesses. However, it is clear from their Trustpilot that the business still has access to its emails and computers to respond to reviews. Despite the rumours online, we cannot confirm whether that The CBD Flower Shop has been raided just by looking at the potential reduction in customer service.
It seems as though the company abruptly changed their shipping carrier at some point in April 2022, with the first review claiming this to be posted on April 14, 2022. We tried to find out what had caused this, however, when customers asked why they were now waiting weeks for their orders to arrive, The CBD Flower Shop responded that they had emailed the customer directly. We haven’t seen those emails so we can not confirm what had caused the sudden change in shipping policy.
CBD companies often face a lot more pressure by shipping companies than other businesses due to the riskiness of what they ship. In a comment from a reddit post written 2 years ago, we can read about how HempHash was raided 3 years ago due to a large Royal Mail seizure.
The CBD Flower Shop currently has a banner on their site to show that they've had to change their courier service and will temporarily stop taking flower orders. However, due the mix of slow customer service response time and slow to non-existent delivery in some cases, people are speculating that the company has stopped trading - as written in this review.
As you can see, our understanding of what is happening with these two companies relies on compiling the information provided by CBD users online. It’s important to not assume anything that isn’t already confirmed. However, seeing as people are finding themselves out of pocket, we felt the need to investigate. We’ll keep an eye on the situation to see if there are further developments to report.