Let’s talk about a common question…”Is CBD legal in DC?”
CBD oil is legal in DC so long as it conforms to all requisite federal standards. Also, the district has a large number of both medical and recreational dispensaries.
As a side note, recreational marijuana possession became legal in DC with the passing of Initiative 71 in 2015. Marijuana is legal for medical or recreational use within the district, subject to certain provisions (for instance, consumption can only occur at home).
Now we are going to learn more about DC CBD laws, licensing requirements in the district and where to buy CBD in DC.
What is CBD?
CBD, also known as cannabidiol, is a non psychoactive compound derived from cannabis. CBD shares the outer space in the cannabis plant with THC. Studies continue to show CBD may have a plethora of beneficial properties, with the most popular of these being: anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative, pain relief, anti-seizure, and anxiety relief properties.
In these medical field studies, CBD has proved its worth in a growing amount of trials.
CBD is a Cannabis Derivative
Cannabidiol is a cannabis derivative. That doesn’t mean that it is the same as marijuana, though. It simply comes from a cannabis plant.
This is an important distinction to keep in mind when answering the question, “Is CBD legal in DC?” CBD is a non-psychoactive cousin of THC, which means CBD cannot, and will not, get you high. As long as your CBD is hemp-based, or comes from the hemp plant, it will not contain an amount of THC over 0.3%. Federal regulations on CBD currently require all CBD products to come from hemp in order to remain federally legal.
A THC amount of 0.3% isn’t enough to get anyone high. In fact, this amount is so low that you could drink an entire container of CBD oil (not recommended), and still not get high.
Supplementing with CBD is a great way to treat patients in a more natural way than other medications that have harsh side-effects. CBD research exploded over the last few years, and significant investments are continuing to be made in research and development.
The FDA is still figuring out their approval process for CBD, so until this is complete, CBD will not be able to achieve the legal status of a dietary supplement.
Why is CBD Illegal in Some Places?
This is a tricky subject. Let’s begin by addressing the fact that while CBD is federally legal, each state or in this case district, has it own laws. While most states have followed the Farm Bill of 2018 footsteps, a handful still have strange laws revolving around CBD, mostly concerning cultivation.
Thankfully, CBD is legal in DC! Since the District of Columbia is fully administered by the federal government, the Farm Bill standards concerning hemp and hemp derived products is the only applicable legal charter.
How Did the Farm Bill Help Hemp?
The 2018 Farm Bill brought a revolution for hemp and hemp derived products. The cultivation of hemp became federally legal for recreational purposes when this was passed.
This bill specifically removed hemp, which is now legally defined as cannabis containing less than 0.3% THC by weight, from the schedule I list of controlled substances. As of the writing of this article, cannabis as a whole is set to be voted on for removal from this same list.
CBD is now legal in DC because only federal regulations are observed here.
The United States FDA and CBD
The Food and Drug Administration has the authority of regulating CBD product labeling, monitoring therapeutic claims for CBD, and the usage of CBD for recreational and dietary purposes. The FDA, currently, does not allow the advertisement of hemp-derived CBD as a dietary supplement, or as an additive to food and beverages.
The FDA must authorize any health claims that CBD products make. No medications to date have received this designation, except for the pharmaceutical drug Epidiolex.
While the Food and Drug Administration has maintained this stance for years, it has recently softened these regulations and is considering appropriate legislation around labeling CBD as a dietary supplement. In addition, the Farm Bill has given the authority to states to allow or disallow the cultivation and business of CBD.
Let’s move on to CBD and its legal status in DC.
Is CBD Legal in DC?
DC has already taken several positions on the legalization of both cannabis and hemp. While hemp-derived CBD is completely legal in DC, recreational marijuana is also legal. One can read more about the laws concerning marijuana use in DC here.
Licensing Requirements for CBD in DC
Hemp-derived CBD does not require a license for use in Washington. CBD products made from cannabis must be purchased from a medical dispensary. Possession of (less than 2 oz) recreational marijuana is legal for anyone above the age of 21.
DC CBD Possession Limits
DC has decriminalized all CBD possession limits. Currently, there is no possession limit for hemp-derived CBD products in DC.
Where to Buy CBD in DC?
To be honest, CBD products are all over the place in DC. Consumers can buy CBD oil and hemp-derived CBD products from a variety of retail storefronts, gas stations, and kiosks within the district. I want to caution you, though, to be extra careful where you purchase your CBD products.
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In the summer of 2020, the FDA conducted a study on CBD products from different brands. It reported that roughly 25% of CBD products are either fake, under-dosed, or mislabeled. CBD is expensive. I would hate to see a bogus CBD company rip you off.
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Winding Up | Is CBD Legal in DC?
Yes, CBD is legal in DC! Here are some things to look for to make sure your CBD falls within the federal guidelines for use:
- Hemp-derived CBD is legal
- It must contain less than 0.3% THC, unless prescribed by a doctor
- I recommend that the CBD labels include a QR code that scans to a third-party lab result
- Marijuana-derived CBD is legal but requires a license
That about wraps up covering the legalities of CBD within DC. If you are looking to purchase or possess CBD in DC, you don’t have to worry. It is 100% legal on ANY federal property.