CBD, or cannabidiol, is a compound found in cannabis plants. Unlike its more famous counterpart THC, CBD does not produce any psychoactive effects. This has led to it being used in a variety of products, sold from reputable retailers like OTO CBD USA, ranging from oils and tinctures to edibles and topical creams.
CBD’s popularity has been on the rise in recent years, thanks in part to the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. This bill removed hemp—a type of cannabis plant that contains low levels of THC—from the list of controlled substances, making it legal to grow and sell across the United States. CBD derived from hemp plants is now also legal.
However, CBD’s legal status is still somewhat murky. The FDA has yet to approve CBD as a safe and effective treatment for any medical condition. And while the 2018 Farm Bill made CBD derived from hemp plants legal at the federal level, individual states are still free to regulate CBD as they see fit. As a result, the legal status of CBD varies from state to state. In some states, it is completely legal; in others, it is only legal for certain purposes; and in some states, it is entirely illegal.
The FDA’s Position On CBD
The FDA classifies drugs into five different categories, or schedules.
Schedule I drugs are those that have a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use. Examples of Schedule I drugs include heroin and LSD.
Schedule II drugs have a high potential for abuse but also have an accepted medical use. Examples of Schedule II drugs include cocaine and methamphetamines.
Schedule III drugs have a lower potential for abuse than Schedule I or II drugs but still have an accepted medical use. Examples of Schedule III drugs include Tylenol with codeine and ketamine.
Schedule IV drugs have a low potential for abuse relative to Schedule III drugs and also have an accepted medical use. Examples of Schedule IV drugs include Xanax and Ambien.
Schedule V drugs are those that have a low potential for abuse relative to Schedule IV drugs and also have an accepted medical use—but only when they are used under close medical supervision. There are no currently approved Schedule V drugs containing CBD.
This means that, as far as the FDA is concerned, any currently available CBD product—regardless of whether it is derived from hemp or marijuana—is classified as a Schedule I drug with a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use. As such, the FDA has cracked down on companies selling CBD products, issuing warning letters to those who make unsubstantiated claims about their products’ health benefits or who sell their products in violation of other federal laws. The FDA has also issued guidance explaining how it intends to regulate food products containing CBD as well as dietary supplements containing CBD.
CBD’s legal status in the United States is complicated and ever-changing. At the federal level, hemp-derived CBD is now legal thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill. However, individual states are still free to regulate CBD as they see fit, leading to a patchwork of laws across the country.