As many who are interested in achieving greater overall health and wellness know, there has been much news and excitement, in various health and wellness circles across the country, about CBD. Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is gaining ever-increasing popularity as a safe, natural, and non-addictive way to treat a number of common health conditions. Scientists and medical researchers across the globe are continuing to discover new benefits of CBD all the time.
All of the buzz about CBD is understandably accompanied by much curiosity as well. Many are interested in CBD but truly don’t yet know very much about it. In many cases, the information that is believed to be known is actually based on misconceptions and misassumptions. This is understandable due to CBD’s common association with another product of the cannabis family, marijuana. Because of this association, many also wonder what, if any, laws regulate the use of CBD. Is it legal? Is it legal in all forms? Is it legal only in states where marijuana is also legal? Is it regulated by the FDA? These are all good questions to ask, and ones that, at Rejuvia, we believe are worth answering.
The Difference between CBD and Marijuana
While CBD and marijuana are both products of the cannabis plant, they, in fact, function very differently within the body. Many CBD products, like the products sold at Rejuvia, are extracted from the hemp plant. Many are familiar with the hemp plant, as it has been used by people for any number of things for almost as long as history has been recorded. For more than 10,000 years, people have used hemp for everything from textiles, to building materials, to body care and nutrition, and more.
What many do not necessarily realize, however, is that, in order to be classified as hemp, the plant must be a variety of cannabis that contains .3% or less THC content by weight. THC, as many may know, is the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana that produces the feeling of being “high” or “stoned.” Some marijuana varieties of the cannabis plant can contain up to 30% THC.
Thus, while it may be difficult for the naked eye to tell the difference between a hemp plant and a marijuana plant, the distinction is important for legal purposes and for the effect that the use of the plant will have on the consumer. CBD products, like those sold by Rejuvia, are extracted from the hemp plant through high-tech extraction and purification processes, which verify that all traces of THC are removed. Thus, users can consume CBD for the health benefits they want without the psychoactive side effects that they don’t. While this is wonderful from the perspective of the consumer, what does this distinction mean from a legal perspective?
Taking a Look at the Law
In light of the increasing popularity of CBD and other hemp derivatives, lawmakers have recently turned their attention to the legality of its use. From a federal standpoint, the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018 (also commonly known as the “2018 Farm Bill”) ultimately removed hemp as a Schedule One illegal substance. Instead, the bill reclassified hemp as an agricultural commodity. In order to qualify as an agricultural commodity under the Act, the hemp must:
- Contain less than .3% THC;
- Be in compliance with shared state and federal regulations; and
- Be cultivated and grown by a properly licensed grower.
If the hemp plant meets these standards, it is considered federally legal – as is the CBD extracted from it. While this is wonderful news for those who wish to consume CBD, it is important to note that, from a federal perspective, the Farm Bill of 2018 only legalizes the hemp and CBD the meets the aforementioned qualifications.
If a CBD product is extracted directly from the marijuana plant, however, it remains federally illegal. Certainly, states have taken their own positions on this issue, and there are some states that have legalized marijuana for all purposes, including recreational use. In those states, certainly, CBD extracted from any variety of the hemp plant is considered legal for use. Even in the states where recreational marijuana use remains illegal, the vast majority of states have approved usage of marijuana derived CBD for medicinal purposes. Certainly, however, each state has its own particular laws and regulations, and it is important to research the legal requirements for your state before using any product.
FDA Regulation of Hemp and CBD Oil
While the Farm Bill of 2018 legalized hemp and the CBD extracted from it on a federal level, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is still determining exactly how it will regulate CBD and other hemp-derived products like it. Increasingly, various groups are placing pressure on the FDA to release and implement new rules for CBD as it was given authority under the Farm Bill to do so. Legal experts expect additional FDA guidelines to be issued sometime in the near future.
While the law is certainly still evolving with respect to CBD and other cannabis derivatives, the good news for consumers is that there are many companies, like Rejuvia, that produce pure, potent, and beneficial CBD products from hemp plants. These plants are sourced from the very beginning to meet federal requirements and are entirely free of even trace amounts of THC. Thus, those using our CBD can have the peace of mind in knowing that they are receiving the health benefits they want without any legal worries that they don’t.