The legality of CBD oil is no longer in the gray area. In fact, the DEA just banned CBD oil, cementing its place on the list of Schedule 1 substances. CBD or Cannabidiol is a compound or cannabinoid in cannabis that won’t get you high. What it does do though is stop seizures and aid others suffering from debilitating conditions.
So why is the DEA putting it on a list of the most harmful drugs available to man? Probably for the same reasons they temporarily banned the herbal pain reliever, Kratom earlier this year. They’re both alternatives to more dangerous prescription opiates that are plaguing the country. The DEA’s actions seem to protect big pharma’s pockets more than the health of American citizens.
DEA Banned CBD Oil, But Why?
The archaic spelling of the word marijuana, “marihuana” is used in the text on the Federal Register announcing the rule. Probably to avoid turning up in marijuana-related search results. According to DEA Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg this code “will allow DEA and DEA-registered entities to track quantities of this material separately from quantities of marihuana.”
The reason given is that the US is complying with international drug-control treaties. Before this elaboration, CBD’s legality was in a gray area. It was assumed that CBD extracted from medical cannabis was only legal for medical marijuana patients and illegal to the rest. However, CBD derived from industrial hemp was being sold across the country as if it was federally legal. Well, apparently the DEA has always believed any form of cannabis extract to be schedule 1.
The DEA claims that there are small amounts of cannabinoids in every CBD extract. They cite this as another reason to keep CBD on schedule 1.
“For practical purposes, all extracts that contain CBD will also contain at least small amounts of other cannabinoids. However, if it were possible to produce from the cannabis plant an extract that contained only CBD and no other cannabinoids, such an extract would fall within the new drug code.”
So basically, the DEA made extracting CBD completely illegal whether it is from hemp or not.
The DEA’s view on CBD oil and cannabis, in general, is as outdated as their use of the word “marihuana.” Luckily, medical marijuana patients in many states are protected from prosecution for possessing CBD oil. In fact, Congress passed an amendment in 2014 called Rohrabacher-Farr which prevents federal law enforcement officials from prosecuting patients for possessing CBD products.
Petitioning led to the DEA to lift the ban on Kratom earlier this year. Perhaps similar petitioning will give rise to the unbanning of CBD oil as well.