The Farm Bill passed – Hemp CBD is USA legal, kind of….
The THC factor
Although the Marijuana and Hemp are different plants from the cannabis sativa family, the new federal law (the Farm Bill) really doesn’t care. It’s all about Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the psychoactive compound found in Cannabis. It’s basically what gives the user a “high”. The new law determines what is “Marijuana”, solely by the THC percentage. If the plant has more than .3% THC – it’s Marijuana. No other consideration is given. Therefore, if the end-product being used is more than .3% = illegal.
Cannabidiol (CBD) – What’s up with that?
CBD is the cannabinoid/compound found in cannabis that has shown positive results in various medical studies across a wide range of ailments. It’s the primary reason for the newfound interest in Hemp. The Hemp plant tends to have higher concentrations of CBD, as compared to other cannabinoids. Although it contains lower THC levels than Marijuana, it can easily achieve THC levels above .3%. Therefore, even before the Farm bill was passed, the DEA and other regulating groups would burn/destroy legally authorized research Hemp crops and this will continue.
In the past, there was never a clear understanding of the legality of CBD. All criminal testing by governmental agencies and private drug tests (employment related) were for THC. Nobody cared about CBD, since it didn’t have any type of impairment associated with it. The new Farm Bill explicitly allows the transfer of Hemp “derived products” across state lines “for commercial or other purposes”. By defining Hemp as less than .3% THC, it can be inferred that CBD is a “derived product” of Hemp and is therefore now officially legal.
I’m just going to grow Hemp in my back yard.
No, you’re not! All states that want to have Hemp production need to submit a licensing plan to the USDA. Not having an approved license from the state or Federal government = illegal.
Can I go out and buy CBD and feel confident I’m not breaking the law?
Now, more than ever, it’s important to have a trusted provider for your CBD needs. As per the Farm Bill, to be outside the definition of “Marijuana” – your CBD products should be certified 3rd party lab tested at or below .3% THC. A popular misconception is that all Hemp is .3% (or below) THC. However, this is not the case and THC levels can vary widely. Certified testing of the product is the only way to make sure your CBD is compliant with Federal law. The market is still very unregulated, looking for products that certify 0% THC is ideal. Legality is not the only concern. Having a consistent product is important as well. You’ll want to feel confident that the product you use today will provide the same results when you reorder. As a result, a smart choice is to consider providers that controls every step of the production process from ground to your door step.
About the Author:
Michael Gillin is a free lance writer with a consulting background in emerging technology and consumer markets. In his current assignment withhe provides the Green infused CBD information platform. This platform’s goal is to provide a portal of easily understandable CBD educational material and related current events.
This material is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as or intended as legal advice or legal opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. Individuals should not act upon any information provided herein and should seek the advice of private legal counsel before engaging in any activities.
Supporting information sourced by John Hudak of the Brooking Institute
The Farm Bill, Hemp legalization and the status of CBD: An explainer