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CBD Takes Flight: Navigating the Legality of Hemp

Up, Up and Away. Last May, TSA quietly changed its policy to allow consumers to bring hemp-derived CBD containing no more than 0.3 percent THC on airplanes in both carry-on and checked bags. Read the official USDA policy here.

Isaac Sutton, co-owner of The 420: A CBD Store said, “While hemp is legal in all 50 states, laws differ state-to-state regarding certain types of products. Therefore, we suggest consumers familiarize themselves with the laws specific to the states from which they are departing and arriving. It may also be helpful to carry a copy of the certificate of analysis — which shows the cannabinoid potency profile — for the products with which you intend to travel.”

The 2018 Farm Bill dramatically changed the world of HEMP by legalizing its’ production, sale and extracts. Hemp, by federal law, can contain no more than 0.3 percent THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). Anything with more THC is classified as marijuana and is considered a schedule 1 drug by the Drug Enforcement Administration. It is federally illegal.

If the purified CBD comes from HEMP plants, it is federally legal. There are almost no restrictions on the hundreds of other compounds made by the plant, such as terpenes (which are responsible for its’ “distinctive” aroma and healing properties). However, if it comes from a marijuana plant, it is illegal. That is because marijuana plants themselves are prohibited by the DEA.

The FDA is Continuing to Evaluate the Regulatory Frameworks for Products Containing Cannabis and Cannabis-Derived Compounds

The FDA has warned companies selling CBD products they claim to prevent, diagnose, treat or cure serious diseases such as cancer. Alzheimer’s disease, psychiatric disorders, and diabetes. The FDA has also tested the chemical content of cannabinoid compounds in some of the products, and many were found to not contain the levels of CBD they claimed to contain.

They have heard reports of CBD potentially containing contaminants (e.g., pesticides, heavy metals); and are looking into it.

Sutton continued, “It is important to purchase high quality, CBD products that have third-party testing and batch testing as well as certificates of analysis (COA). These analyze both the quantity of CBD in the product and the quality. Companies must label their products accurately and not make claims that cannot be backed up by scientific testing or FDA approvals.”

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