What You Need to Know About CBD Oil in California
Written by Cathy Rozyczko
Edited by Jason Brett on
October 4, 2021
Hemp CBD has a confusing history of legalization that it shares with its intoxicating cousin, marijuana.
Both the federal and state legislatures continue to clarify the difference between marijuana and hemp, the plant that gives us CBD. But state laws are still evolving, and California is a state that consistently strives to clarify the muddy waters with new legislation.
So If you live in California and are interested in buying, using, or selling CBD oil, and would like a clear understanding on how the state of California regulates the sale of CBD products, you'll want to read on.
Present Legal Status of Marijuana in California
As of 1996, medical marijuana can be sold at registered and licensed dispensaries in California. You can also grow, use, and transport marijuana for personal use. Technically, growing marijuana for commercial purposes is illegal in California, and your local governments (state and county) may have laws that keep you from growing marijuana for the purpose of selling it. However, these laws can't stop you from transporting it.
What is the difference between hemp and marijuana?
Both CBD and marijuana come from different variants or cultivars of the same species of plant, Cannabis sativa. In the eyes of federal law, a hemp plant is any cannabis sativa plant that contains .03% THC or less by volume; and a marijuana plant contains more than .03% THC. Here is some more information to keep the above terms straight:
- Hemp: Hemp contains only trace amounts of THC, but it has significant amounts of CBD. Hemp oil, also known as hemp seed oil, comes from the seeds of the hemp plant. When buying CBD oil, you want to make sure what you are purchasing is not hemp seed oil, which does not contain CBD.
- CBD (cannabidiol): CBD oil aka CBD aka cannabidiol is a naturally occurring compound extracted from the stem, leaves, flower, and stalk of the hemp plant. In contrast to THC, the most well-known cannabinoid present in cannabis, CBD does not make you high.
How have federal and California laws on marijuana and hemp changed over the years?
There have been a lot of changes in the status of marijuana over the decades. Here is a summary of the key federal and California state legislation regarding the regulation of the sale and use of cannabis and cannabis-derived products:
Federal Laws on CBD and Hemp in California
Controlled Substance Act of 1970: This legislation was the first to list marijuana and hemp as Schedule I controlled substances in 1970, making them illegal in the US.
Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018: A 2018 farm bill, called the HR 2 (115th) Agricultural Improvement Act legalized the production of industrial hemp in the US. The legislation removed hemp from the Schedule I list of illegal substances established in 1970. It also legalized products that come from hemp if they contain less than 0.3% hemp.
Controlled Substances Act of 2018: This law still prohibits the use of CBD in foods and beverages illegal as per the US Food and Drug Administration. In response, California state health officials have banned foods and beverages infused with CBD. Hemp seed oil, on the other hand, is permitted by law to be used in food and beverages.
California State Law: CBD and Hemp
Compassionate Use Act of 1996 (Proposition 215): With Proposition 215, California legalized the sale and use of medical marijuana for retailers who become properly registered and licensed.
Adult Use of Marijuana Act of 2016 (Proposition 64): This law is also known as the Control, Regulate, and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act. California voters approved Proposition 64, making the personal possession and use of marijuana legal in the state of California. Specifically, city and county governments can't keep individuals from growing, using or transporting marijuana for personal use. On the other hand, local governments can regulate or even prohibit activities related to the commercial use of marijuana — but they can't stop the products from being delivered.
Here are some more details to remember if you use cannabis products in California:
- The California Department of Public Health reminds us that it is still illegal to use cannabis recreationally in public.
- In some cases, car searches for cannabis are still legal.
- Police can still require you to take a Standardized Field Sobriety Test to determine if you have been driving while impaired.
- Regardless of its legal status, the state of California warns that cannabis chemicals are dangerous to people and to the environment.
- Cannabis products with THC levels higher than 0.3% are considered marijuana in California.
- Marijuana businesses in California cannot use hemp CBD in their products.
What is the legal status of CBD oil in California?
CBD oil is now legal in California. However, it is still technically illegal for retailers to sell CBD edibles or to infuse foods or beverages with CBD oil. California law still makes this distinction because the Food and Drug Administration has not yet cleared CBD oil as a substance that can be safely ingested. However, you can find plenty of retail stores that sell edibles and beverages infused with CBD oil — although it is technically against the law for them to do so.
What are the best CBD oil brands in California?
CBD oil and hemp oil are legal in California. The best CBD oil brands available in California according to LA Weekly are:
Who can buy CBD oil in California?
Because county and city regulations may still vary in the Golden State, there are still some ambiguous areas in terms of what age you must be to consume CBD oil, particularly if it is full spectrum.
However, in most places within California, if you are 21 years of age or older, you will be able to buy CBD oil. Full spectrum CBD oil still contains THC — but if it comes from hemp that has been legally cultivated for commercial use; it will contain less than .03% of this cannabinoid, and using full spectrum CBD oil will not make you high.
While full-spectrum CBD products may contain enough THC to cause you to fail a drug test at work, many believe they can create the much desired entourage effect, which takes place because the entire range of naturally-occurring cannabinoids is present within the product, giving it extra strength.
Where can you buy CBD oil online for delivery in California?
As of May 2020, you can buy CBD online and have it delivered to your California address.
Final words: What's legal and what's not in California?
In short, the legal status of CBD oil in California continues to evolve as the state's changing legislation seeks to define the difference between marijuana and hemp.
Recreational marijuana is now legal, putting many registered and licensed medical marijuana dispensaries out of business, but you still cannot use recreational marijuana in public.
And since hemp is no longer a Schedule I controlled substance as per the 1970 Controlled Substance Act, CBD oil and other CBD products derived from hemp are legal in California when bought by a licensed and registered retailer.
However, selling edibles or beverages infused with CBD oil from the hemp plant remain illegal in California because CBD has not yet been approved by the FDA for oral consumption.
The sale and use of CBD products that are derived from the marijuana plant (i.e. cannabis plants that contain more than .03% THC) remain illegal as well.
CBD Oil Review brings you the latest news in the cannabis industry. For top reviews on the best cannabis products, or more information on where and how you can buy CBD oil in your area, explore our website!
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