What does Hemp Legalization Mean for the CBD Industry?

What does Hemp Legalization Mean for the CBD Industry?

April 29, 2019

The modern market has become absolutely saturated with CBD products that may or may not fall under current legalization standards. While many individuals assume that the open marketing tactics utilized by companies means their products are legal, that isn't always the case. The truth is that some CBD products are legal, but just as many (if not more) are actually illegal. Law enforcement simply does not actively enforce these laws and regulations.

What Products Contain CBD?

Nearly anything related to health or beauty (including some foods) have an alternative on the market containing CBD. Just a scant few of the most popular CBD products include:

  • Capsules
  • Tinctures
  • Vaping liquids
  • Bath bombs
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Lotions and oils
  • Makeup
  • Resin, Balms, etc.
  • Edibles
  • ...And much more.

Cannabidiol: What is It?

It's important to know what Cannabidiol (CBD) actually is to understand its slightly murky legal status. See, CBD is one of two chemicals which naturally occur in marijuana, hemp, and other cannabis-type plant species. The second chemical is THC, also known as Tetrahydrochloride. It is the THC, not the CBD, which is responsible for the "high" feeling associated with recreational marijuana usage. CBD is not psychoactive, and therefore, does not produce these side effects.

The CBD products you find on the market are derived from one two major plants – hemp or marijuana. The cannabidiol derived from hemp is of a higher quality and is often 100% THC free versus containing small amounts. It is important to note that THC is not legal under any terms, so CBD products that also contain this second element are never legal.

CBD Products: Are They Legal?

CBD, along with both hemp and marijuana, was recently de-scheduled. This doesn't mean it's legal, per say, but that it has finally – after a long and drawn out process – been removed from the listing of schedule one drugs.

This was a major issue standing in the way of CBD products being truly legal, as schedule one drugs are those known to be "extremely addicting and hazardous to human health." Considering the fact that CBD is the only chemical compound known to activate the highly beneficial Endocannabinoid System (ECS) in mammals, this statement was obviously ridiculous.

But that doesn't mean that all of the CBD products currently flooding the market are legal. That "murky legal status" we briefly touched on owes to the fact that only some of those products are legal. While law enforcement does not actively enforce laws surrounding this products, a good portion of them are technically illegal.

What Legalizing Hemp Means for the CBD Industry

A bill was passed through congress recently which granted hemp full legal status. This means that growing plants in accordance to FDA standards and regulations is now legal at a federal level. It also means that products made from those plants is now legal.

What does this mean for the cannabidiol industry? It means that the majority of hemp-derived CBD products are now legal. Those products derived from marijuana plants, however, are still technically illegal.

How to Know Which Products Are Legal

Since the FDA does not currently regulate products contain cannabidiol, it is up to the consumer to figure out whether they are legal or illegal. This can be difficult with so many products on the market making a wide range of claims and boasting vastly different formulas.

In general, however, CBD products which meet the following qualifications are legal: