Is CBD Legal? Read This Before Buying CBD Legal States 2022 CBD (cannabidiol) is a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not get a user “high;” however, its legality is still a gray Use this guide to learn about federal and state regulations regarding CBD use and which of these regulations affects you where you live.
Is CBD Legal? Read This Before Buying
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Over the last few years, the demand for CBD products has skyrocketed, especially as a growing number of consumers seek all natural alternatives to common ailments such as poor sleep, anxiety, and chronic pain.
One of the first questions that people have in regards to CBD products is whether they’re legal or not. The short answer is yes, but only under specific conditions. CBD legality isn’t black and white. There’s a lot of gray area that causes a lot of confusion amongst those with a newfound interest in CBD.
Because there is so much misinformation about the legality of CBD, we’re here to help set the record straight. Here’s everything you need to know about whether CBD is legal or not, along with a list of five of the top CBD brands that meet all legal regulations.
Understanding Hemp vs. Marijuana
A lot of the confusion and misinformation comes from people not understanding that hemp and marijuana are two different plants. Therefore, the products made using compounds derived from each of these plants are also quite different.
Hemp and marijuana are two different varieties of the cannabis sativa plant. Both naturally produce CBD, along with other cannabinoids. Visually, hemp and marijuana look the same. However, the biggest difference is the level of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
THC is the compound that causes people to get “high.” It’s known to create feelings of euphoria, and may cause confusion and anxiety. Hemp has a nearly non-existence amount of THC, with levels averaging below 0.3%. However, marijuana plants contain a much higher amount of THC, which can be as high as 30%.
Because marijuana has such a high THC content, which produces mind-altering effects, the plant is federally illegal in the U.S. along with many other countries around the globe.
Hemp-Derived CBD Is Legal
Understanding the difference between hemp and marijuana is crucial in understanding the legality of CBD products. Under the 2018 Farm Bill , hemp-derived CBD products are legal on a federal level. The bill removed hemp as a Schedule I substance and reclassified it as an “agricultural commodity.”
One of the most common misconceptions about this bill is that it legalizes all CBD products, regardless of whether the CBD was derived from hemp or marijuana. However, this isn’t true. According to the DEA, CBD is a Schedule I substance, which is illegal.
But, if the CBD is derived from hemp, and adheres to all of the regulations stated in the 2018 Farm Bill, then it’s no longer a Schedule I substance and is legal. In order for a CBD product to be legal, it must not only be derived from hemp, it must also:
● Contain less than 0.3% THC
● Must adhere to shared state-federal regulations
● Must be grown by a licensed grower
The bill also removed all restrictions on the sale, transportation, and possession of hemp-derived CBD products. This means that these products can be transported across state lines, as long as the product meets the above criteria.
Federal Legality Doesn’t Guarantee State Legality
Just because CBD is legal on a federal level doesn’t necessarily make it legal in all states. States can have laws that set forth further regulations, or ones that outright ban CBD products altogether.
Before buying any kind of CBD product, it’s important to check into any state laws that may be in place. For example, CBD products are considered illegal in Iowa. However, they are legal in neighboring states such as Illinois and Minnesota.
How to Confirm a Product’s Legality
Companies can advertise that a CBD product is 100% legal, but that doesn’t mean that what’s marketed is necessarily true. The only way to guarantee with total certainty that a product is legal is by reviewing the certificate of analysis (COA).
This is a document that’s created once a product has been tested by an independent third-party lab. A COA provides extremely detailed information about a product, including:
● Microbial contaminants (ie. mold, yeast, etc.)
Not only does a COA confirm the presence of these compounds, but it also provides a measurement. So when determining whether a CBD product is legal, you’ll want to look at the findings for THC. If the percentage is 0.3% or below, then the product meets all legal regulations.
If a product has a reading higher than 0.3%, or if a product doesn’t have a COA available, it’s best to steer clear.
Now that you know the ins and outs of the legality of CBD and how to determine if a product is legal, let’s take a look at the top 5 trusted CBD brands. These brands use the highest quality hemp-derived CBD and each product undergoes rigorous testing to ensure it meets legal regulations as well as quality, safety, and potency standards.
Top 5 Trusted CBD Brands
Penguin CBD products are powered by nature and inspired by earth. The company is run by a team of specialists from a variety of fields that work together to create quality CBD products. Penguin products are inspired by the calm, cool-under-pressure personality and lifestyle of penguins. The brand believes that everyone should be able to have a life that is balanced and chill.
All Penguin CBD products are made using GMO-free Oregon-grown hemp plants. These plants are raised and farmed without the use of pesticides or any other harmful chemicals.
Extract type : CBD isolate and broad spectrum (product dependent)
COAs : Lab results are available for each product on the Penguin website
2. Verma Farms
Verma Farms creates premium CBD products that are inspired by Hawaii. All CBD is sustainably sourced from the highest quality hemp plants grown throughout the United States that are grown without the use of harmful pesticides. Ingredients are carefully selected to ensure only the safest, highest quality options are used.
Though best known for their tropical paradise flavored collection of gummies, Verma Farms also offers a line of performance gummies that are uniquely formulated for improved recovery, sleep, and energy.
Extract type : Broad spectrum
● Pet products (oils and treats)
COAs : Lab results are available for each product on the Verma Farms website
FOCL is a premium CBD brand based out of Los Angeles and Denver. The team at FOCL (short for Focus) is passionate about wellness and obsessed with producing plant-based products that actually work.
Alongside its overarching belief in plant-powered wellness, FOCL has impressive third party testing standards and clearly does not cut corners in terms of quality. FOCL hemp is grown in the USA using organic and sustainable practices, and all FOCL products are non-GMO, THC-free and vegan. With fair prices and high quality ingredients, FOCL really is a go-to for all things CBD.
4. R+R Medicinals
As we routinely write about R+R Medicinals becoming one of the leading brands in the US, their gummies are no exception. They continue to impress by having created a 25mg gummy, available in both full and broad spectrum (THC-Free) with an amazing taste.
What’s even more amazing is that their gummies are USDA Organic, making them one of the only options available in that category worldwide! Furthermore, they’re completely Vegan, and they taste awesome, as they’ve partnered with a local candy manufacturer to create these delicious rings. So many other brands use artificial flavors, dyes, and other funky ingredients to achieve great tastes at the sacrifice of unnatural ingredients. R+R is truly delicious and a much more pure product.
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5. Colorado Botanicals
Colorado Botanicals offers surprisingly affordable, premium, THC-free, broad-spectrum CBD with sustainability in mind. Their organic Colorado hemp is tested and uses no synthetic chemicals or potentially dangerous pesticides throughout the growing process. Although they’re yet to have any issues, their unique, vertically-integrated quality control offers multiple layers of protection.
Colorado Botanicals offers the usual range of hemp-derived CBD products, but their maximum potency is above and beyond their competitors.
Extract type : Broad spectrum
COAs : Lab results are easily accessible on each product’s page or their Lab Reports page
Bonus: Sunday Scaries
Sunday Scaries products are created to keep away the the impending doom of Monday that most people experience every Sunday. These top notch products are infused with premium CBD extract to calm the mind, improve your focus, relieve work pressure, and to reset your equilibrium so that you feel more balanced.
Sunday Scaries products deliver all of the whole-plant benefits offered by terpenes, flavonoids, fatty acids, and minor cannabinoids. Whether you want to have a truly relaxing bath or want to partake in some delicious CBD candy, this brand has got just the product for you.
Extract type : Broad spectrum
COAs : Lab results are available for each product on the Sunday Scaries website
The legality of CBD products isn’t as clear cut as many people would hope. However, by understanding the regulations at the federal and state level, it should be much easier to navigate the ever-changing and ever-growing landscape.
Buying CBD products from reputable brands that embrace third party testing is the best way to ensure that you’re investing in a legal product. The five brands on our list are well known in the CBD industry and go above and beyond to meet legal, quality, and safety regulations.
CBD Legal States 2022
CBD (cannabidiol) is a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not get a user “high;” however, its legality is still a gray area for some people because it is derived from the cannabis plant. CBD must be legal on both the federal level and the state level in order for it to be legal in your state. The 2018 Farm Bill legalized, on the federal level, the regulated production of hemp, or any part of the cannabis plant with a THC concentration below 0.3%. States, however, have the final say in whether or not cannabis-derived products are legal within their state lines.
Is CBD Legal in my State?
Marijuana legality varies by state, as does CBD legality. There are 17 states called that legalized both medicinal and recreational use of marijuana as long as you meet the minimum age requirement: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, nIllinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.
The following states have legalized CBD, some only for specific medical purposes: Alabama, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Some of these states only allow CBD below certain THC levels. CBD and CBD products in Idaho are legal only if they contain zero THC and are derived from the mature stalks of the plant. In Tennessee, possession of CBD products is legal if they contain less than 0.6% THC. In Alabama, the maximum THC level is 0.3%.
Your Guide To CBD Legalization By State
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In the past several years, cannabidiol (CBD) has gone from fringe to mainstream in the world of wellness. Today, you can easily find CBD in a variety of forms—tinctures, capsules, gummies and more. Despite its popularity, there’s a lot of confusion regarding even the most basic aspects of CBD, including what it is and whether it’s legal.
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- Full-spectrum CBD oil is derived from premium hemp extract
Your ability to purchase and consume CBD legally largely depends on where you live. There are both federal and state regulations regarding CBD use, and knowing which of these regulations affects you is key to consuming the cannabinoid safely and legally.
What Is CBD, and Is It Legal?
CBD is a chemical compound naturally found in cannabis sativa, a plant species that includes both cannabis and hemp plants. (Think of cannabis sativa as a family and cannabis and hemp as sisters within that family.) The primary difference between the two plants is that hemp contains higher amounts of CBD than THC (the main intoxicatingly psychoactive compound in cannabis) while cannabis plants contain higher amounts of THC than CBD.
CBD and THC don’t contain the same amount of psychoactive components associated with feeling “high,” according to Mackenzie Slade, director of Cannabis Public Policy Consulting. “CBD is technically a psychoactive cannabinoid, but when derived from hemp plants, the psychoactive component is very, very low,” she says. While CBD won’t get you high, early studies indicate many potential benefits, including the possibility of mitigating depression and anxiety symptoms, relieving pain and protecting against some neurological diseases.
CBD is also scientifically linked to the prevention of seizures, leading the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve a prescription drug called Epidiolex, which contains CBD as an active ingredient.
Despite these benefits, Slade says the legality of CBD is a gray area that legal analysts continue to hash out. Remember how CBD can be derived from both cannabis and hemp plants? That origin plays a role in its legality. At the federal level, CBD derived from cannabis is considered a Schedule 1 substance and is illegal, explains Slade. But CBD derived from a hemp source containing less than .3% THC by dry weight is not illegal because hemp is not a controlled substance. “[This distinction is called] a ‘source rule’ because CBD itself is not identified on the Controlled Substance Act schedule,” says Slade.
Additionally, it’s illegal to sell CBD products that are not FDA-approved, according to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. “The Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act [states] that once a substance is used as the active ingredient of a new drug that has been approved or authorized for clinical trials, food and beverages containing this ingredient cannot be introduced into interstate commerce. This is called the drug exclusion rule,” says Slade. She explains that this means the FDA’s approval of Epidiolex eliminated the possibility of producing and selling any food or beverage with CBD. This detail makes the situation even more complicated because CBD is commonly used in foods and drinks like lattes and juices. “[This is why] the federal legal status of CBD depends on the type of product it is and its source,” adds Slade.
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2018 Farm Bill
The most important year for CBD legalization (so far) was 2018 when the Agriculture Improvement Act (also known as the 2018 Farm Bill) was signed into law. “Farm bills are legislation that govern agricultural production and are updated every few years,” says Slade. “They basically serve as the federal government’s enabling laws to regulate and provide guidance on agriculture and food.”
The 2018 Farm Bill was the first time a farm bill included hemp cannabis plants. It effectively made the cultivation, production and sale of industrial hemp federally legal and regulated. When this change occurred, brands selling products containing CBD were elated because it meant hemp farmers would be able to extract CBD from their plants for ingestible purposes legally. But Slade says their hope was premature due to the drug exclusion rule, which was already in effect because of the FDA’s approval of Epidiolex.
CBD Legalization by State
All these layers make the question of whether CBD is legal to sell tricky to answer, and rules regarding CBD possession and use are just as complicated. Here, it comes down to the state in which you reside, as different states have different CBD regulations. While hemp-based CBD is legal at a federal level, some states consider using or possessing any cannabis product illegal—period. Other states only allow CBD use medically. This variance is outlined in greater detail in the chart below.
|State||CBD Legal Status||Additional Details|
|Alabama||Conditionally legal||CBD oil exceeding 0.3% THC legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Arkansas||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil exceeding 0.3% THC legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|California||Fully legal||Hemp-derived CBD edibles are not legal in the state, but cannabis-derived CBD edibles are; doesn’t seem to be strictly enforced and legislation has been proposed to remove this restriction|
|Delaware||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil exceeding 0.3% THC legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions, though the CBD market in general is relatively unregulated in Delaware|
|District of Columbia||Fully legal|
|Florida||Conditionally legal||Hemp-derived CBD oil only|
|Georgia||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions; must contain equal amounts of THC and CBD, and THC content cannot exceed 5%|
|Hawaii||Conditionally legal||Hemp-derived CBD oil only|
|Idaho||Conditionally legal||All varieties legal so long as there is no traceable THC content|
|Indiana||Conditionally legal||All varieties legal so long as they do not exceed 0.3% THC|
|Iowa||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil exceeding 0.3% THC legal with medical cannabis license; list of accepted conditions is fairly restrictive|
|Kansas||Conditionally legal||All varieties legal so long as there is no traceable THC content; medical CBD oil legal with license for specific conditions, provided the THC content doesn’t exceed 5%|
|Kentucky||Conditionally legal||Hemp-derived CBD oil only|
|Louisiana||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Maryland||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Massachusetts||Fully legal||Oil with THC content exceeding 0.3% fully legal for adults age 21 and up and for adults 18 to 20 years old with medical cannabis license|
|Minnesota||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Mississippi||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license; limited number of accepted conditions; must be obtained from University of Mississippi; cannot exceed 0.5% THC|
|Missouri||Conditionally legal||CBD oil exceeding 0.3% THC legal with medical cannabis license—no qualifying conditions|
|Nebraska||Conditionally legal||Hemp-derived CBD oil only; cannabis is illegal even for medical purposes|
|New Hampshire||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|New Jersey||Fully legal|
|New Mexico||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|New York||Fully legal|
|North Carolina||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license; however, the program is limited to a very small subset of the population of study participants and patients suffering from specific conditions|
|North Dakota||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Ohio||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Oklahoma||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license—no qualifying conditions|
|Pennsylvania||Conditionally legal||CBD oil exceeding 0.3% THC legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Rhode Island||Conditionally legal||CBD oil exceeding 0.3% THC legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|South Carolina||Conditionally legal||CBD oil exceeding 0.9% THC legal with medical cannabis license; very restrictive list of qualifying conditions|
|South Dakota||Conditionally legal||Medical and recreational cannabis products illegal; ballot measure proposed to change this ruling following a successful 2020 ballot measure that was overturned by the Supreme Court|
|Tennessee||Conditionally legal||CBD oil exceeding 0.9% THC legal with medical cannabis license; very restrictive list of qualifying conditions|
|Texas||Conditionally legal||Low-THC (up to 1%) CBD oil available for patients with qualifying conditions|
|Utah||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|West Virginia||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Wisconsin||Conditionally legal||Cannabis-derived CBD oil legal with medical cannabis license for specific conditions|
|Wyoming||Conditionally legal||Hemp-derived CBD oil only|
Despite these regulations, CBD legalization remains a hot topic. “The hemp and CBD industry need regulatory certainty for ingestible products, and I think it will inevitably come through legislation requiring the FDA to regulate hemp extracts,” says Slade, adding that this level of oversight is key for preventing illegal CBD products from ending up on store shelves. “There will also be a need for the FDA to include enforcement policies to stop all illegal production and sales while that regulatory infrastructure is being developed.”
It’s likely that regulations surrounding CBD legality will continue to evolve and fluctuate over time. The conversation has only just begun.