In the United States, CBD itself is not specifically listed in the United States Controlled Substances Act like the psychoactive compound, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The US government, which specifies which parts of cannabis plants are prohibited, excludes hemp’s “mature stalks” and “oil or cake made from the seeds” and “sterilized seeds” from its definition of “marihuana.”
However, if it was sourced from actual marijuana (i.e. cannabis that contains more than 2% THC by volume), then it is technically illegal. Most of the best CBD oils for pain that you find in dispensaries in states like Colorado, California, and Washington (as well as other states where weed is legal) will have been extracted from marijuana plants — not industrial hemp plants. Unfortunately, this means that these products are not allowed to be sold online and shipped across state lines to “non-legal” states.

“All parts of the plant Cannabis sativa L., whether growing or not; the seeds thereof; the resin extracted from any part of such plant; and every compound manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such plant, its seeds or resins; but shall not include the mature stalks of such plant fiber produced from such stalks oil or cake made from the seeds of such plant, any other compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such mature stalks (except the resin extracted therefrom),fiber, oil or cake, or the sterilized seed of such plant which is incapable of germination.”
Amazon entered the retail grocery space by acquiring Whole Foods Market in 2017. Since then, Whole Foods Markets across the country have been slowly changing and their products are being incorporated into Amazon’s online grocery offerings. While you can find plenty of hemp-based products in the cosmetic, grocery, and wellness departments at Whole Foods, like their parent-company Amazon, Whole Foods still does not sell hemp-derived CBD oil.
As mentioned above, CBD is no longer considered a Schedule I controlled substance under the Farm Act. However, under the DEA’s definition, it remains on the list. This allows for individual states to create exceptions to the status of CBD, even when cultivated from hemp plants grown legally under the act. It also maintains illegal status for any CBD sourced from plants produced in settings that are not consistent with that Act, or by an unlicensed grower. It is expected that more clarification on the status of CBD will come early this year (2019).
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