Research and analysis

Khat: social harms and legislation a literature review

Occasional Paper 95 summarises the findings of a literature review.



The review focused on drawing together existing evidence on the reported ‘social harms’ of khat to consumers in the UK. It also provides a commentary on the legislation brought in to control and prohibit khat in other countries. The review found a general lack of robust evidence on the link between khat use and social harms.

Social harms associated with khat remain a concern among the UK’s immigrant Somali, Yemeni and Ethiopian communities but there was little evidence of a clear causal relationship to support this view.

There is a much stronger evidence base for the medical harm associated with khat which suggests that the dangers of khat consumption are relatively low.