CBD is becoming a popular option in the healthcare industry because it’s positively associated with treating several ailments including anxiety, chronic pain and can offer feelings of relaxation and calm. People are starting to trust CBD oil as a great therapeutic option because of the positive benefits based on the many studies being published in its favor. Last year, the CBD industry got a nice little boost with the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized the growing and cultivation of hemp on the federal level. Yet while the miraculous benefits of CBD oil are great, the real question is, is CBD oil legal? Well, yes it is legal, but there are a few confusing grey areas that people should know about. While hemp-sourced CBD is legal in all 50 states, marijuana-sourced CBD is not legal on the federal level. Confusing, we know. Therefore, we are going to shed light on the legal aspect of CBD oil. However, before getting into that conversation, we need to understand the nature of CBD.
The Nature of CBD
CBD is one of the many (nearly 100) non-psychoactive components of the cannabis plant known as cannabinoids. Unlike its cannabinoid cousin THC, which is the notorious component for inducing the famous “high” effect, CBD does not cause the intoxicating effects. It is a naturally occurring chemical compound positively linked with medical benefits that can help relax and calm both mind and body.
Recent research has shown promising effects, as CBD trials resulted in a significant reduction in pain and worked as anxiety relievers as well. However, due to the presence of THC in Full Spectrum CBD Oils, CBD has also been subject to controversies of legality.
Legality and the Source of the CBD
The legality of CBD oils depends on the source of CBD like other CBD products. CBD is found in both hemp and marijuana plants. However, the quantity differs in both. The hemp cannabis plant contains a high amount of CBD and very low THC, the mind-altering component. While marijuana contains higher THC and low CBD. This difference makes hemp the most efficient source for CBD processing.
The United States government has classified hemp as any plant of the cannabis family that contains less than 0.3% THC. It classifies “marijuana” as any plant of the cannabis family that contains greater than 0.3% THC. Therefore, CBD is completely legal when extracted from industrial hemp.
The growing and cultivation of industrial hemp, however, has only been legal in the US in December 2018 with the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill. Thus, hemp-derived CBD is legal in all 50 states while marijuana-sourced CBD is not legal federally. It is also subject to individual state regulations that can vary across state borders. Hemp-derived CBD can be sold, bought and consumed in all 50 states as long as it is grown in agreement with the Federal Act.
Let’s get into a little history. Do you know that industrial hemp was legal in the United States and it was declared illegal when Congress passed the Marihuana Tax Act in 1937? About 80 years later, the federal government took the position that states can regulate the production of hemp with the 2014 Farm Bill.
CBD and Health Benefits
Cannabinoid research is positive and continually uncovering more and more positive influences on health including stress, muscle soreness and sleep support among others. A study published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine ascertains that CBD considerably decreased chronic inflammation and pain while a review from Neurotherapeutics found that CBD is helpful to decrease anxiety in individuals with, particularly related disorders.
When you buy CBD oil, you need to be aware of the company, and concentration details as most CBD products on the market are mostly unregulated. Products may not contain the amount of CBD that is marketed, and might even include undesirable contaminants.
Though hemp is legal under federal law, it is still subject to state regulations as they are free to set their own policies. However, state lawmakers generally accept the use of CBD oil at various concentrations to treat a range of conditions like epilepsy. Different states also necessitate different levels of prescription to possess and use CBD oil. For example, in Missouri, a person can use CBD oil of a particular concentration if he can show that three previous treatment options have failed to treat epilepsy.
CBD Products and Legal Landscape
CBD products including CBD oils for chronic pain and other ailments have different legal statuses in different states. In almost 20 states, CBD products are legal. However, in 23 states, they are legal in some form, such as for medicinal purposes while in 14 states, only CBD oil is permitted. Which we are going, to sum up, the legal landscape here.
Map of CBD Oil Friendly States
CBD Friendly States
CBD and CBD products are currently fully legal for both medicinal and recreational purposes in: Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Vermont, Washington, and Washington D.C, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wisconsin. These states have explicit laws allowing industrial hemp-derived products and marijuana is also legal for both medicinal and recreational use in 11 of these states.
Semi-Friendly CBD States
The states including the District of Columbia, Hawaii, New Mexico, Kansas, Montana North Dakota, and Oklahoma find industrial hemp grown as per Farm Bill-compliant agricultural pilot program clearly freed from the definition of marijuana. Thus CBD products are legal when grown in accordance with the Federal Act.
Gray Area CBD States
States such as Arkansas, Minnesota, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Texas, and Virginia have clear restrictions for the retail sale of industrial hemp sourced CBD products. However, they have exemptions for argumentation on hemp sourced CBD products being legal or not.
To add to the gray area, there are several states where CBD is legal but latest law enforcement actions have raised the risk of the retail sale of industrial hemp-derived CBD products. The states include Alabama, Arizona, Michigan, California, Nevada, Ohio, Connecticut, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Unfriendly CBD States
The following states have taken a harsh stance on CBD, and it’s advised to proceed with caution: Idaho, Nebraska, and South Dakota.
The Bottom Line?
As of 2019, it is legal to purchase and consume CBD oil made from Hemp in all 50 states.