Utah cbd oil for non medical use

Illegal CBD Oil is Saturating Utah

I’ve seen many stores and companies offering CBD (cannabidiol) oil for sale in Utah over the past year. While quickly spreading in popularity, these purveyors of cannabis derivatives often do not realize that they are breaking the law—and so are the people who buy them.

First, a quick explanation—what is CBD oil? Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a component inside cannabis—it’s a “cannabinoid” molecule much like its more popular counterpart, THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol.

Unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive; it won’t make you feel “high” or impaired. And like THC, CBD appears to show significant medical benefit for varying conditions.

So why do I say it’s illegal? Well, it is.

Let’s start with the federal government. Congress and the various federal agencies regulate drug possession and consumption under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Different substances are placed on different “schedules” that purport to represent their varying degrees of risk for abuse. Cannabis is a Schedule I drug, meaning the federal government asserts there is “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.”

The government has placed synthetic THC on a lower schedule; your physician can prescribe pure THC. For some people it helps, and others have an adverse reaction to this substance. (Many find that a natural blend works far superior to this synthetic pharmaceutical.)

As for CBD, some of its proponents argue that because certain hemp can be imported from foreign countries, this low-THC strain is a-okay to manufacture and market—and possess and use. One producer, for example, claims it is “legal at the U.S. federal level because hemp consumer products are legal at the federal level.”

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration disagrees. They recently responded, in part, as follows:

“Media attention has focused on a derivate of marijuana that many refer to as ‘Charlotte’s Web’ or ‘CBD oil.’ At present, this material is being illegally produced and marketed in the United States in violation of two federal laws: The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA). Because it is illicitly produced by clandestine manufacturers, its actual content is uncertain and will vary depending on the source of the material. However, it is generally believed that the material is an extract of a variety of the marijuana plant that has a very high ratio of cannabidiol (CBD) to tetrahydrocannabinols (THC). Because this extract is a derivative of marijuana, it falls within the definition of marijuana under federal law. Accordingly, it is a Schedule I controlled substance under the CSA.”

You can’t blame people for believing it’s legal when the media helps perpetuate the problem. For example, a news agency in Bismark, North Dakota, emphatically proclaimed that CBD oil is “an all natural product and legal in all 50 states.”

The agency interviewed the manager of a grocery store who said, “It is from the hemp plant and that is different from the medical marijuana plant because of the amount of THC in it. So because it contains less than .3% THC that makes it legal for us to sell it.”

This false information led the same agency to report, just two weeks later, on a law enforcement sting of a tobacco shop in town whose owner now faces up to 40 years in prison for selling these products.

“He tells us he thought everything on his shelves was legal to sell,” the media station reported. They continue:

[The owner] says he’s spoken to all of the companies that sold him the products tested, and they are all outraged over the process and have told him the products were legal for sale, and they will help him in the legal process.

Here in Utah, a local businessman opened shop saying he was “ready to go” in providing CBD oil to Utahns in need. “It has some amazing anti-pain, anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety benefits, but without any kind of high,” he told the Salt Lake Tribune two years ago. “It doesn’t put you to sleep. It calms you down. It allows you to deal with things.”

Separate and apart from the DEA and the other federal agencies weighing in, the Food and Drug Administration has a problem with business owners like this one who make unverified medical claims about, in this case, illegal substances. A presentation of their enforcement actions made last year specifies that they are concerned:

We can also address the legal claim this way: if CBD oil is legal for everybody, why have legislatures around the country gone to the trouble of legalizing the oil for use by epileptic individuals?

Why did Utah, after significant controversy and compromise, pass a legal program for people with epilepsy to obtain legal access to CBD oil?

This brings us to the second part of the answer, and one that stands independent of the federal law. Assume for a moment that these claims were correct—that the federal government had indeed given approval for CBD oil to be manufactured, sold, possessed, and ingested by people countrywide.

That federal legalization would have no bearing on Utah; the state legislature could still deem it illegal. And it has. Regardless of federal law, Utah has its own Controlled Substance Act, in which we find the following definition (with my emphasis added):

“Marijuana” means all species of the genus cannabis and all parts of the genus, whether growing or not ; the seeds of it; the resin extracted from any part of the plant ; and every compound , manufacture, salt, derivative , mixture, or preparation of the plant, its seeds, or resin.

The statute goes on to impose various criminal consequences for the possession of marijuana.

The law does carve out possession of CBD for those involved in an authorized (and limited) research program, or those who have a card from the Utah Department of Health and physician approval for intractable epilepsy. But that’s it.

For everybody else, CBD—like all cannabis—is outlawed in Utah. It doesn’t matter whether the federal government has legalized CBD or not (and they haven’t). There’s another layer of government to deal with.

Law enforcement, for now, appears mostly ignorant of or indifferent toward CBD oil. We have yet to hear reports of manufacturers or distributors in Utah being targeted, or the many Utahns who have been buying CBD products from a variety of stores and websites. But there have been legal problems elsewhere, and Utahns who buy and sell this prohibited product run legal risk, as do all patients using other forms and elements of cannabis.

Of course, it’s ridiculous that a non-psychoactive oil is deemed illegal in the state—or anywhere. It’s also absurd to threaten violence against peaceful people merely trying to relieve a headache or reduce inflammation in their sore back.

This situation is further evidence supporting the case for legalizing medical cannabis broadly in Utah.

Connor Boyack

Connor Boyack is president of Libertas Institute and was named one of Utah’s most politically influential people by The Salt Lake Tribune. He is also the author of 30 books, including the popular Tuttle Twins children’s series. Find him on Facebook or Twitter.

Connor Boyack

Connor Boyack is president of Libertas Institute and was named one of Utah’s most politically influential people by The Salt Lake Tribune. He is also the author of 30 books, including the popular Tuttle Twins children’s series. Find him on Facebook or Twitter.

Our Mission

Change hearts, minds, and laws to build a freer society by creating and implementing innovative policy reforms and exceptional educational resources.

Is CBD oil legal in Utah?

Hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) oil and other CBD products are readily available in Utah. House Bill 3001, also known as the Utah Medical Cannabis Act, was passed on December 3, 2018, and legalized CBD oil containing .3% THC or less. Medical marijuana also became legal under the Utah Medical Cannabis Act for approved patients with qualifying medical conditions. Recreational use of cannabis remains illegal.

Utah has developed licensing procedures for hemp growers, processors, and sellers. The state doesn’t license food or beverages containing CBD.

What is CBD?

CBD stands for cannabidiol. It is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid found in cannabis. Cannabidiol is the second-most abundant cannabinoid in the plant after tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It has many potential therapeutic benefits, including anti-inflammatory, analgesic, anti-anxiety, and seizure-suppressant properties. CBD can be sourced from both marijuana and hemp plants.

Combine THC and CBD to fully employ the entourage effect.

CBD stands for cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating substance found in cannabis. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

Image lightbox

Why is CBD sometimes illegal?

The 1970 Federal Controlled Substances Act categorized all types of cannabis, including hemp, as Schedule I, defined as a substance with a high potential for abuse, no accepted medical use, and a likelihood for addiction. The act also prevented further research that may have shed light on the potential beneficial uses of the cannabis plant.

The Hemp Farming Act of 2018 re-classified hemp as an agricultural commodity and made its cultivation federally legal. Further, the act removed some forms of cannabis from Schedule I status by creating a legal distinction between hemp and marijuana. Hemp is cannabis with less than .3% THC, and marijuana refers to cannabis with more than .3% THC. This distinction in federal law effectively legalized CBD that is derived from cannabis with less than .3% THC, as long as it’s been cultivated according to federal and state regulations.

The 2018 Hemp Farm Bill legislation does not mean that CBD derived from hemp is universally legal throughout the United States. According to the Farm Bill, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has the power to regulate CBD product labeling, including therapeutic claims and the use of CBD as a food additive. The FDA has already maintained that even hemp-derived CBD may not legally be added to food and beverages, or marketed as a dietary supplement.Although the organization has begun to re-evaluate some of these stances on legal CBD products, the FDA has not revised its regulations. The agency also has been strict in its stance against any labeling that could be perceived as a medical claim about CBD.

In addition to federal regulation of CBD, the Farm Bill also gave states the option to regulate and prohibit the cultivation and commerce of CBD. States may also regulate CBD in food, beverages, dietary supplements, and cosmetic products independently, even before the FDA finalizes its policies. Utah represents one such state that chooses to provide regulations regarding the consumption of CBD.

Utah CBD laws

In December 2018, Utah lawmakers passed House Bill 3001, legalizing the production and sale of hemp-derived CBD products. Prior to this, individuals who purchased CBD were required to have a hemp extract registration card. CBD with .3 % THC or less can now legally be purchased by non-patients living in Utah. CBD sourced from cannabis can be legally purchased by medical marijuana patients from state-licensed pharmacies.

CBD with 0.3 % THC or less can now legally be purchased by non-patients living in Utah. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

Image lightbox

CBD is legal in what the state calls ‘medicinal dosage form’ meaning it can’t be smoked or added to food or beverages for sale. Accepted forms of consumption include pills, capsules, oil, topical applications, gel, cubes, and lozenges.

Licensing requirements for CBD

Hemp growers, processors, and sellers must be licensed annually by the commissioner of the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food. Licenses will not be granted to anyone convicted of a drug felony at any time or a drug misdemeanor after December 2018.

Growers, processors, or sellers who violate the law are subject to escalating fines, ranging from $100 to $5,000 for repeat offenders. Unlike many states, however, Utahn legislation emphasizes that hemp growers who violate licensing rules are not subject to prosecution under drug laws unless they knowingly grow marijuana instead of hemp. When applying for a license, applicants must disclose the name of anyone who holds more than 2% voting power in the business.

CBD products must be tested and labeled. The state requires testing of products in state facilities. The quantity of THC and CBD must be verified, along with any other cannabinoid listed on the label. Products must also be checked for mold, fungus, and other contaminants.

Utah CBD possession limits

There are no hemp-derived CBD possession limits in Utah at this time.

There are possession limits, however, for CBD products derived from marijuana. Patients with qualifying medical conditions who have a medical marijuana card or a letter of recommendation from their medical provider may obtain up to a 30-day supply.

Where to buy CBD in Utah

CBD hemp oil can be purchased over-the-counter and without a prescription in Utah. Residents are able to buy CBD in a range of forms from retailers such as vape and smoke shops, and small local pharmacies and health food stores. More locations will likely begin to carry CBD products as the state continues to clarify its position. There are benefits to buying CBD oil and other CBD products directly from a licensed retailer, such as immediate access to a product and the knowledge that it conforms to legal requirements.

CBD oil sourced from marijuana will be purchasable from an authorized dispensary with a medical prescription. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

Image lightbox

CBD oil sourced from marijuana will be purchasable from an authorized dispensary with a medical prescription. Medical marijuana patients must first obtain a patient registration card.

Consumers can also shop from a wide variety of online outlets for CBD products, read consumer reviews, and ship purchases to their homes. Online shopping also offers the ability to gather detailed information about each product, compare different products and product types, and compare products to find the best price.

CBD brands often have their own ecommerce shop, allowing you to purchase your desired CBD products straight from the source. Products purchased online, however, may not be in line with Utah state legal requirements. You can learn more about where to buy CBD oil on Weedmaps.

How to read CBD labels and packaging

The FDA currently does not allow CBD-infused food, drinks, or dietary supplements to be sold, and hasn’t reached a conclusion on regulating hemp-derived CBD products.

While the FDA slowly and cautiously approaches the creation of new regulations for CBD products, the gap between regulated products and anything goes grows wider, leaving consumers at risk of buying poor-quality products.

When buying CBD products, look for this information on the label:

  • Amount of active CBD per serving.
  • Supplement Fact panel, including other ingredients.
  • Net weight.
  • Manufacturer or distributor name.
  • Suggested use.
  • Full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolate.
  • Batch or date code.

One of the most important things to pay attention to is whether a CBD product is full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolate.

Full-spectrum means that the CBD has been extracted from a hemp plant along with all other cannabinoids and terpenes, including whatever trace amounts of THC the plant may have produced. Consuming full-spectrum CBD may yield better results thanks to the entourage effect, a phenomenon in which the mixture of cannabinoids and terpenes work together to produce a more pleasant experience.

Broad-spectrum means that the product contains CBD and terpenes, but has undergone additional processes to strip out any THC.

Finally, isolate is a product that has gone through more intensive processing to remove all compounds except for CBD. Consuming isolate may produce different effects than full-spectrum or broad-spectrum CBD, as these products do not produce the entourage effect.