The Legal Gray Areas of Hemp-Derived CBD
Hemp-derived CBD has recently gained a lot of attention, but there's still a lingering cloud of uncertainty about the legal status of CBD extracts. Hemp-derived CBD products can be shipped across state lines, to all 50 states and many countries. These companies have a hard time finding credit card processors that will work with them, because they are deemed high-risk businesses. This has not stopped dozens of CBD companies popping up all over the country. A quick online search will offer many conflicting opinions on whether hemp extracts are legal to purchase in Arizona, in retail stores or online. This article is meant to be a brief overview on the legal status of CBD, and current legislation surrounding it.
An AZ state appeals court recently ruled that cannabis concentrates are not protected under the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act. This means that medical dispensaries throughout the state are no longer allowed to sell concentrated cannabis products, which makes up roughly 40% of medical cannabis market. The ruling makes no mention of hemp or CBD directly, but focuses entirely on cannabis extracts in concentrated forms (shatters, vapes, hashish, and edibles). While this ruling is already being challenged, it has filled the community with confusion about what this means for the future of medical cannabis and for CBD.
In regards to hemp, Governor Doug Ducey very recently signed a law allowing a hemp pilot program to launch in
Arizona in 2019. Soon hemp will be legal to grow and process into CBD extracts. In addition to CBD, hemp can be made into textiles, building materials, food products, plastic replacements, and much more! The FDA also very recently approved a CBD-based pharmaceutical drug called Epidiolex, which helps treat rare forms of epilepsy. CBD is now recognized as having medical value, so many in the medical community are expecting the DEA to eventually overturn CBD's schedule 1 status.
On the federal level, hemp is receiving overwhelming bipartisan support. Nationwide hemp legalization is a part of the 2018 farm bill, which is currently undergoing reconciliation between the house and senate. Hopefully within the next few months we will see sweeping progress and the start of a hemp boom in the United States. This will open the doors for more than just the CBD industry!
This is by no means legal advice, so when in doubt do your own research before you buy CBD products. If you want to stay up to-date with the latest hemp legislation, visit https://hempsupporter.com/.