CBD Oil: Just Tell Me Already—Is It Legal or Not?
If you’re one of our loyal customers, then you know what we’re all about: we want to provide safe, health-promoting products to improve your quality of life in a world that’s increasingly stressful and time-constrained.
And if you’ve been vaping with us for a while, you’ve heard some of the kerfuffle surrounding CBD and the question of its legality. If you’re worried about it at all, if you get a little nervous when ordering from us online, and you’re living with the subdued fear that one day the DEA is going to show up on your doorstep talking about controlled substances, asset seizures and prison sentences, we have one word for you: Stop. Breathe. Ok, that’s two words, but seriously—you’re fine. In short, the product that you purchase from us—CBD, or Cannabidiol oil— is perfectly legal, in all 50 states.
The confusion comes from the name of its source plant: Cannabis. Many people, upon hearing that word, think of joints the size of their thumb, Cheech and Chong movies, or that group of kids they knew in high school who wore dreadlocks and tie-dyed shirts and greeted everyone with slow, droopy-eyed geniality. Slackers sitting torpid on a sagging couch, stuffing handfuls of Cheetos into their slack-jawed mouths. But what they don’t know is that there are different types of cannabis. There’s the type we’re all familiar with, Cannabis Indica—weed, pot, marijuana, etc.—good for convincing partakers that their most innocuous comments are frighteningly profound, and for inspiring eccentric feats of back-of-the-fridge gastronomy. Then there’s Cannabis Sativa, more commonly known as hemp, the source of many a finely woven, itchy sweater, but also of the medicinal compound known as Cannabidiol, or CBD. Both Cannabis Indica and Sativa do contain THC—that’s the psychoactive chemical in pot that makes pickles dipped in peanut butter seem like a good idea. However, both strains also contain CBD, the compound which many users credit with the numerous health benefits of which you, dear customer, are well-acquainted. The difference is that, and this is where the issue of legality comes into play, the THC levels in Cannabis Indica are high as, well, high—while Sativa contains a nearly undetectable amount. So, processed industrial hemp must have no more than 0.3% THC content to be considered legal. From Cannabis Sativa comes industrial hemp, and from there CBD, and from there, into our inventory and into your vaporizers. So yes; it’s legal. How we got here is a fascinating story; I’ll try to be brief:
Once upon a time, cannabis was the devil.
Have you seen ‘Reefer Madness‘? Oh my God, have a laugh.
It’s a 1930’s exploitation film made from a PSA about the dangers of “marijuana addiction,” the effects of which can, in the lurid inaccuracy of this movie, lead to acts of violence and depravity. Based upon the kind of uninformed, unfounded fears this film was trying to cultivate, the U.S. government pretty much just plugged its ears and stamped its feet whenever anyone mentioned cannabis, up until 1971. That’s when Canadian scientist Ernst Small decided, based on no conclusive evidence whatsoever—perhaps because his dog had chewed up his favorite pipe and Ernst was in a bad mood about it—that he was going to set 0.3% as the THC level at which “hemp” could be distinguished from cannabis. It was a completely arbitrary decision, but it stuck, and became law, and after decades of restrictions, loopholes, and intricate dancing around the issue, here we are. Since the levels of THC in Cannabis Sativa are nearly undetectable, that’s what we use for CBD today. To further allay any uncertainty about the legality of CBD, a bill that passed recently—The Agricultural Act of 2014, aka “The Farm Bill”—contains a little phrase, buried deep within its legalese, that states: “None of the funds made available by this act or any other act may be used…to prohibit the transportation, processing, sale or use of industrial hemp that is grown or cultivated in accordance with section 7606 of the Agricultural Act of 2014, within or outside the State in which the industrial hemp is grown or cultivated.”
This provision, allowing for hemp to transported, processed and sold freely within the 50 states, means that you and I can enjoy CBD without qualms, in public or private.
So relax; it’s 420.