CBD is Legal
WHY THE 2014 FARM BILL CHANGED EVERYTHING
The legal growth and sale of hemp would not be possible without the 2014 Farm Bill. As passed by the House, the bill includes the two-page Section 7606, entitled “Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research” provision. This section states that regardless of any other federal law: “the industrial hemp is grown or cultivated for purposes of research conducted under an agricultural pilot program or other agricultural or academic research; and “the growing or cultivating of industrial hemp is allowed under the laws of the State in which such institution of higher education or State department of agriculture is located and such research occurs.”
100% LEGALLY COMPLIANT
On December 20, 2018, U.S. President Donald J. Trump signed into law the 2018 Agricultural Improvement Act, otherwise known as the 2018 Farm Bill. This act contained language specifically inserted by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) that completely legalized industrial hemp and ended nearly 80 years of prohibition on the plant. Hemp is now completely exempt from the definition of the controlled substance act (CSA).
Furthermore, the 2018 farm bill clarified the definition of hemp — often limited to fiber and seed — to include the entire plant, specifically the floral parts and cannabinoids derived from it. This put into motion the legal framework for the already burgeoning marketplace for hemp and CBD extracts.
The 2018 farm bill also opened up the ability for tribal lands to grow hemp and made provisions for USDA crop insurance and grants.
WHY WAS HEMP LEGALIZED?
Following the passage of Section 7606 of the 2014 Farm Bill, Kentucky became the first state to create state sponsored industrial hemp pilot programs. These pilot programs were designed to test the agronomics of the crop, and what it could mean to farmers and processors who want to enter the industry. Citing 5 successful years of growth and an increase of farming salaries in his home state, Senator Mitch McConnell, along with other influential policy makers such as Sen Ron Wyden (OR) determined that it made sense for hemp to be available for farmers to grow legally in all 50 states. The return of this crop to our nations farmers should be heralded as a decree of job creation, economic growth, and innovation.
While it’s true that CBD is legal in all 50 states, there are situations when it isn’t legal. The difference between legal and illegal typically depends on several important factors determined by the state in question. There is, however, one very important factor that is a crucial determinant across all states, and that is whether the CBD is derived from hemp, or marijuana.
Now, marijuana and hemp are both members of the cannabis family, so they do share a lot of characteristics. There is, however, a crucial difference between the two–the amount of psychoactive Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) each plant produces.
While marijuana can contain up to 30% of THC, hemp contains no more than 0.3% of THC. In other words, marijuana can get you really high, while hemp has such a low amount of THC, that it would be impossible to get high off it.
In many states, “CBD-only” products have less than 0.3 percent or 0.5 percent THC CBD oil is legal. However, any product that contains THC, even in small amounts, is considered marijuana under federal law and is illegal.
The DEA’s stance, all along, has been that cannabinoids are marijuana and thus are a Schedule I substance and illegal in all circumstances. So, for now, CBD products are illegal substances and DEA will continue to treat them as such, but CBD from hemp is legal in all 50 states if THC is below .3% of THC.