CBD oils are increasingly popular among medical patients, athletes, and consumers looking for muscle relaxation, general therapy, and anxiety reduction. But their legal status remains utterly confusing - especially since the US Drug Enforcement Administration published a rule regarding CBD in December 2016.
In that rule, the DEA reiterated that all cannabis extracts, including CBD, are considered Schedule 1 substances. The agency said the clarifying rule was needed to bring US law into conformity with United Nations treaties governing controlled substances.
The DEA considers it illegal, and yet it remains available online and in retail stores around the country. But the clarification only served to confuse both consumers, CBD manufacturers, and retailers. And it was almost immediately challenged in court by a consortium of hemp and CBD oil producers.
More recently, the DEA issued a clarification to the clarification. It clearly stated: "Cannabinoids, such as tetrahydrocannabinols (THC), cannabinols (CBN) and cannabidiols (CBD), are found in the parts of the cannabis plant that fall within the CSA definition of marijuana, such as the flowering tops, resin, and leaves."
Meanwhile, CBD laws vary from state to state, and while the DEA considers it illegal under federal law, CBD products remain available for sale in health supplement shops and organic food stores around the country. Though some of them might not contain all that much CBD.
In 2014, President Obama signed into law the Agricultural Act of 2014. Section 7606 of the act, Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research, defines industrial hemp as distinct from marijuana. This authorizes institutions of higher education or state departments of agriculture in states that legalized hemp cultivation to regulate and conduct research and pilot programs. Basically, it’s up to the states to regulate the growth per their own State Departments.
President Obama’s execution of the Agricultural Act of 2014 is an integral piece to CBD oil’s legality. If a plant is deemed legal (where the determining factor is a THC level under 0.3%) that then makes all products made from the source material legal as well. Did you ever wonder why your hemp lotion 15-20 years ago was legal but "smoking a little weed" wasn’t? In this case, it’s all about the THC levels your plant doesn't have.
There are 33 states with laws specifically regulating Hemp to include:
- New Hampshire
- New York
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- West Virginia
There are 24 states that have defined industrial hemp as distinct from other strains of cannabis and removed barriers to its production.
As of early 2017, 14 of these regulated 33 states legally produce hemp seeds. The federal designation indicated hemp could be grown for industrial or academic applications. These 14 states (CA, CO, IN, KY, MA, MO, ND, OR, SC, TN, VT, VA, NC, and WV) are producing hemp seeds for industrial use. While regulations and agricultural standards are still developing in America, European sourced is still the ideal choice for the consumers. Ideal conditions, more experience, and refinement of regulations to ensure safety and quality lend more trust to you, our consumer.
In recent years, 16 states have passed CBD-only laws, which legalize the possession and use of CBD products for specific qualifying conditions-but not cannabis products containing higher levels of THC. Those CBD-only laws often limit the legal possession and use of CBD products to children with epilepsy, and some nerve and muscle afflictions.
Even in those states with CBD legal protections, however, the substance is considered federally illegal by the DEA. Only six states-Idaho, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Indiana, and West Virginia-still consider every part of the cannabis plant, including CBD, to be illegal.
Most states with CBD-only laws allow possession but do not allow licensed dispensaries, home cultivation, or any other supply infrastructure. In other words, registered patients can have it and use it but can't legally obtain it.
In Georgia, for example, the legislature razzed a law in 2015 that made legal possession of up to 20 ounces of CBD for patients with qualifying conditions like seizure disorders and multiple sclerosis. The law does not, however, set up any supply infrastructure-there are no licensed dispensaries or producers. Recently, the Georgia legislature passed a compromise law that includes Alzheimer’s disease, AIDS, autism, epidermolysis bullosa, peripheral neuropathy, and Tourette’s syndrome in the list of diseases that can be treated by CBD-as long as that CBD oil has no more than 5 percent THC.
The Lеgаl Stаtuѕ of CBD
The legal standing of CBD is utterly confusing. Quite honestly, we think it’s astoundingly ridiculous that such a beneficial and natural compound is compared to narcotics like heroin. CBD has been shown in a study, for example, to improve blood circulation in the brain.
Yet, to the "educated" politicians, CBD is bad because it supposedly gets you high, even though it really doesn't.
Nevertheless, all we can do is educate and inform. Ask a dozen people if CBD is legal, and you’ll get a dozen answers. The short answer is "yes," though we can't just leave it at that because it’s a tad more complex.
CBD extract is legal for medical and recreational use in the U.S. as long as the product contains below 0.3% Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This is the psychoactive compound in cannabis that gives you that sensation of being high. THC is the main reason cannabis is illegal in the first place. While CBD and THC share some beneficial properties, the former does NOT cause the off-the-wall high feeling.
CBD should not be confused with THC. Both are forms of cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. There are, by the way, an estimated 85 cannabinoids in the marijuana plant. THC and CBD are simply the more well-known and documented of the bunch. CBD oil sourced from hemp is legal all across the U.S when sold as a dietary supplement.