Is Cannabis Oil Legal?
Welcome! At CBDMarijuanaoil.com we will help you to understand the differences between legal cannabis oil derived from hemp and illicit marijuana oils. CBD rich hemp oils are legal for purchase in the United States and over 40 other nations and we can help guide you to reputable online merchants offering high quality, whole plant cannabis oils for sale in 2018. The question is not so much is Cannabis oil legal, but what types of oils qualify as legal and where.
Marijuana oil has been a hot topic over the last few years as many states pass medical Marijuana programs and more and more reports come filtering out of them regarding the therapeutic potentials offered by various extracts featuring high levels of Cannabinoids such as CBD (Cannabidiol), one of the main active substances contained within Cannabis. Dramatic cases featured on such noteworthy TV shows as the Dr. Sanjay Gupta CNN specials that first brought strains such as Charlotte's Web into the national spotlight have done much to raise public awareness of CBD.
Interest in Cannabidiol Grows
2014 saw a flurry of interest in Cannabidiol in particular, with a slew of states successfully passing CBD only legislation after mounting pressure from many numbers of families with children suffering from intractable Epilepsy resulted in the fast tracking of Cannabidiol laws in more than 10 U.S. states. The Cannabidiol issue is proving to be quite popular politically as it allows politicians to get behind the "won't get you high" side of the CBD story while temporarily dancing around the looming issues of future medical marijuana programs that are pending or have been proposed in many of these states, as well as the national movement towards approval for medicinal and recreational use on a large scale.
While these CDB laws are well intentioned and make certain types of cannabis oil legal in certain states, many of them are extremely exclusive as to what illnesses may qualify patients for use, and limit production of the plant—in most cases Charlotte's Web— to a handful of licensed facilities. These laws have drawn both praise and criticism from various groups, as many feel they stop well short of where we eventually need to be in regards to Medical Marijuana Oil and Medical Cannabis, limiting the use to only a handful of patients that are on a very short list of approved conditions and in some cases, exclusively for Epilepsy.
While many states have now passed laws legalizing the production of plants bearing Cannabidiol for medicinal use, these laws will take many months if not years to be implemented while the details are ironed out as to whom will produce the plants and products for distribution in each of these states. Many patients and families in the states that have enacted these CBD laws are frustrated that they currently have no way to access CBD, in most cases assuming that Cannabidiol has to be extracted from illicit Marijuana oil. It has also been frustrating for patients and families that still find themselves in states with neither Medical Marijuana programs that provide access to Marijuana oil nor Cannabidiol laws providing access to CBD.
The irony though, is that Cannabidiol is already legal to be sold in the form of CBD Rich Hemp finishing products used in the manufacturing of nutritional supplements and has been for some time now, but many people in these states that either do not qualify for the CBD programs, or are waiting for the laws to take effect, remain unaware that it is currently possible to legally Buy CBD Hemp Oil online. Is cannabis oil legal? Depends where you live and what type of cannabis oil.
High CBD Hemp Oil
A derivative of the industrial or commercial hemp plant, CBD Rich Hemp Oil is offering a great legal alternative for those living in non medical marijuana states that would like to try CBD oil but are still waiting for the laws to catch up in their part of the country, as well as folks just seeking highly concentrated sources of Cannabidiol in general.
This type of Hemp oil should not be confused with well known nutritional products that have been sold for some time now such as Hemp seed oil, which are sold for their high nutritional value and typically contain very little if any Cannabidiol or other Cannabinoids. These nutritional products are however, sold under the same laws that allow for Hemp based Cannabinoids to be sold legally.
Hemp is an excellent source of various cannabinoids other than THC
CBD content in Hemp oil, when extracted from the proper strains, can be very high as Hemp plants are now the very strains that are being used to breed high CBD levels back into Cannabis after years of selective recreational breeding for high THC values. Well known strains such Charlotte's Web are hybrids that were selected from crosses with High CBD Hemp varietals and those Hemp genetics are what account for the new High CBD Strains of Marijuana and commercial Hemp that have and are being developed.
Industrial and commercial Hemp has been bred over decades to reduce the THC limits beyond .3%, as to meet the international guidelines for industrial hemp certification, but the CBD has remained untouched, whereas in the recreational market, the exact opposite has happened over the last 30 or 40 years of indoor growing. The money has traditionally been in high THC values, and as a result CBD was slowly selected against in favor of high THC .
CBD modulates/diminishes the effects of THC so is not a desired trait for recreational strains of cannabis for the most part, unless in very small concentrations. Strains that approach a 1:1 ratio of THC to CBD have little psychoactive effect and are more suitable for medicinal use where high THC doses can be uncomfortable for some. It is only with the recent surge of interest in Cannabidiol that breeders are getting the financial incentive to work with these previously abandoned hemp strains in order to bring CBD back into the Cannabis genetic pool and develope strains such as Charlotte's Web, Cannatonic, ACDC and Harlequin, among many other high CBD variants, some of which now have low enough THC levels to qualify for industrial Hemp status. A great breakdown of some of the most well known High CBD strains being used to make Marijuana oil and extracts in Medical Marijuana states today may be found here via Synergy Wellness's site.
Hemp based Cannabis oil legal?
In 2004, the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the naturally occurring Cannabinoids contained in non psychoactive varieties of Cannabis (industrial Hemp) are outside of the regulatory power of the DEA making hemp stalk and seed based cannabis oil legal after the DEA attempted to enforce a zero tolerance policy on the trace amounts of THC contained in Hemp products being sold at the time, such as nutritional Hemp seed oil. One can view these trace amount of THC being very similar to the trace amount of morphine and codeine found within poppy seeds used for baked goods.
This zero tolerance policy was challenged by the HIA (Hemp Industries Association) who won the ruling in 2004, which was subsequently left unchallenged by the Bush administration and DEA. Industrial Hemp is defined internationally as having .3% THC or less by dry weight, so that has become a defining line between what is legally considered Hemp and what is considered "Marijuana" under U.S. law after the 9th circuit court of appeals ruling that placed the Cannabinoids contained within Hemp into a separate category than those within strains of Marijuana with higher than .3% THC content.
If CBD is derived from Marijuana, it is illegal in many areas as are all constituents of the plant. When derived from commercial hemp, CBD is legal as the Cannabinoids contained in non-psychoactive strains of Cannabis are exempt from regulation in the US and around 40 other countries when used in Hemp finishing products. Current legal status of Cannabidiol can been seen on the wiki page here.
Strains such as Charlotte's Web, that started out being classified as "marijuana" strains, have now been able to be reclassified as Hemp strains, due to the meeting of the .3% THC threshold. This is an important designation, as breeders are now breeding Cannabis strains down to acceptable THC levels, while still offering a plant that carries all of the other combinations of naturally occurring Cannabinoids, which provide a synergistic effect when taken together along with the plants given Terpenoid and Flavanoid profiles.
This has tremendous implications for people that do not need high THC levels in their Marijuana oil and extracts as it offers a legal avenue to procure CBD Oil for Sale in all 50 states. The 2014 Farm Bill took further steps to distinctly define hemp in the U.S. to allow for early pilot farms to develop and the pending Industrial Hemp Act would sever hemp's connection with marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act once and for all, making hemp based cannabis oil legal and clearing up any current ambiguity between hemp and marijuana under the CSA.
Update January 1st, 2017: The recent news stories of the DEA placing hemp based CBD as a schedule one substance have to do with marijuana, and accounting codes, not the above precedents, ie HIA v. DEA 2004, and the 2014 Farm Bill which already exclude hemp based cannabinoids from DEA regulation making whole plant hemp based cannabis oil legal when produced in accordance with state hemp program guidelines. See noted cannabis attorney Bob Hoban's excellent blog post here for more details on this latest development.
Update January 1st, 2018: State laws surrounding CBD are starting to make a grey area even greyer as states such as Indiana are currently seeking to make CBD imported from outside of the state, illegal for residents inside the state that qualify for CBD possession under current state laws. Alaska has made selling hemp based CBD against the law for local marijuana shops to sell, but other stores are still free to sell imported hemp oils. All CBD oils sold at local marijuana shops in Alaska currently, must be produced within the state, under the current state guidelines for marijuana production.
Of course, hemp oils are not marijuana oils, but this illustrates some of the complications arising from various states legal marijuana programs and medical marijuana programs in 2018. Some states are allowing for the sales of CBD oils that contain zero % THC, while .03% is the widely accepted standard for industrial hemp classification in other countries and U.S. states. While I am unaware of anyone being prosecuted for simple possession of hemp based CBD oil in the United States in the last 4 years, one should consult their current state laws when purchasing hemp based CBD oils online.
Hemp based nutritional supplements
Hemp based products have been legal to sell in the US for some time now, but the growing of Hemp remained illegal until 2014 and early manufacturers of Cannabidiol products were forced to import their Hemp base from overseas.
With domestic hemp programs coming online slowly in 2014-2016 and being legally distinct under law from Marijuana via the Farm Bill, producers of High CBD Hemp Oil will now be able to switch from imported base material from Europe and China to higher quality, domestically grown medicinal Hemp strains such as Charlotte's Web, leading to vast improvements in both potency per dollar spent as well as overall Cannabinoid profiles.
2104 saw very limited growing of domestic Hemp, as new programs were set up and established, but 2015 and 16 saw a sizable increase in production as many hemp farmers in Colorado, Oregon, Kentucky and Tennessee rolled out production under various state hemp programs. Unfair Marijuana laws should not restrict the growth of Hemp in the U.S, which has a long and proud relationship with Hemp, until it was criminalized along with cannabis by definition of the term Marijuana which came to encompass both illicit Marijuana as well as benign Hemp plants under U.S. law.
All though the line between Marijuana oil and Hemp oil is rather arbitrary at .3% THC, it is a clear definition none the less, allowing for legal sale of Hemp based nutraceuticals and domestic cultivation for research. Interstate shipment of products created with domestic hemp is a current grey area with regard to the new state legal hemp farms in more than 30 U.S. states now, many of which are producing cannabis oil legal under the various state pilot programs.
The future of High CBD Hemp Oil
2015 and beyond will bring many exciting changes to the current High CBD Hemp oil market. The Hemp plant once again being cultivated domestically for the first time in decades, will allow for companies producing Cannabidiol Rich Hemp products to source their base material from domestic suppliers, raising the bar on many of the current offerings that are using imported Hemp base from Europe from commercial strains that just happened to have decent CBD levels rather than strains actually developed to have high CBD levels, that are grown out seedlessly like traditional Marijuana for the strongest concentrations of Cannabindoids, such as those found within Marijuana oil.
New companies are already popping up, making products from Whole Plant extracts taken from high quality domestic or European Hemp plants with more complete Cannabinoid profiles and offering concentrations of CBD in their extracts similar to what is obtainable from strains such as Charlotte's Web. Charlotte's Web itself has recently been reclassified from Marijuana by the state of CO as a Hemp variety (story here) which will allow for the sales of Hemp based finishing products derived from it in all U.S. states, the same as other legal Hemp based CBD nutritional supplements that are currently being sold.
The move to Whole Plant extracts will mark an important change in the market as Whole Plant extracts derived from the flowers of the female Hemp plants are able to offer superior Cannabinoid and Terpene profiles as well as higher concentrations of base Cannabinoids, making them similar in composition/concentration to traditional Marijuana Oil extracts derived from illicit Marijuana. A look inside of one of the nations earliest whole plant CBD Hemp pilot programs producing cannabis oil legal for sale may be seen here.