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What is the Legal Status of CBD?

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Recently the DEA ruled that CBD products would be considered schedule 5 drugs as long as they were approved by the FDA. This has left a lot of people wondering: what exactly is the legal status of CBD? What do people mean when they talk about a “legal grey area” when it comes to CBD?

What do you Mean by “Legal Grey Area?”

In the US CBD is both legal and illegal, depending on where you’re at and where the CBD is extracted from. For instance, in California CBD that has been extracted from legal cannabis regulated by the state of California is legal to make and sell. CBD which has been derived from industrial hemp is not regulated by California and is not legal in the state.

DEA Says CBD is Illegal

The DEA is pretty straightforward about their opinion regarding the legal status of CBD. They see hemp in the same category as cannabis, despite the fact that it does not get you high.  Rusty Payne, a spokesperson for the DEA said in an interview with Vice last summer, “Hemp is a made up word, “ he said. “For it to be controlled, it has to fall within the definition of marijuana, not just test positive for THC. When it comes to CBD, these products are coming from the plant, which is controlled, which is illegal.”

The foggy legal status of CBD does not stop the industry however. CBD is expected to become a billion dollar industry by 2020, and that number will only continue to grow. CBD is available both in various online retailers, dispensaries, coffee shops and health food stores across the country in both legal and nonlegal states. The WHO (World Health Organization) recently concluded that CBD was not a harmful substance.

So in conclusion, this is still needlessly complicated. Hope that clears some things up.

Image Source: Des Moines Register


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