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The Legality of CBD: Navigating the Grey Area

The Legality of CBD: Navigating the Grey Area


CBD, or cannabidiol, has exploded in popularity over the past few years as more and more people turn to this natural compound for relief from a variety of ailments, from chronic pain to anxiety. However, because CBD is derived from the cannabis plant, which is illegal under federal law, the legality of CBD has long been a grey area. In this article, we’ll explore the current state of CBD legality and provide some tips for navigating this complex landscape.

The 2018 Farm Bill

One of the most significant developments in recent years regarding the legality of CBD was the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. This bill legalized hemp, which is defined as cannabis with less than 0.3% THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis. Because CBD can be derived from hemp, this bill effectively made CBD legal at the federal level.

State Laws

While the 2018 Farm Bill legalized CBD at the federal level, state laws regarding hemp and CBD can vary widely. Some states have fully embraced the CBD industry, while others have implemented strict regulations or even banned CBD altogether. It’s important to research the laws in your state before purchasing or using CBD.

The FDA and CBD

While the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp and CBD on a federal level, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been slow to catch up. As of now, the FDA has only approved one CBD-based drug, Epidiolex, which is used to treat seizures associated with rare forms of epilepsy. The FDA has issued warning letters to companies that make health claims about their CBD products without FDA approval, and has not yet established clear guidelines for the use of CBD in food, beverages, and dietary supplements.


The legality of CBD is a complex and ever-evolving issue, so it’s important to stay informed as regulations continue to change. By researching state laws and being cautious about health claims regarding CBD products, consumers can navigate the grey area of CBD legality with confidence.

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