At the end of 2018, the United States government signed into law the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized the production and sale of hemp and hemp products within the United States. Specifically, the 2018 Farm Bill stated the following:
- Hemp has been removed from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act is no longer considered a controlled substance.
- Hemp is defined as any cannabis plant that contains not more than 0.3% delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) by dry weight.
- States and Indian tribes may not prohibit the interstate transportation and shipment of lawfully produced hemp.
- Hemp growers must have a valid USDA-issued license.
- States and Indian tribes may enact and enforce laws regarding hemp that are more stringent than federal law. However, States and Indian tribes may not block the shipment of hemp through their territories.
Marijuana, which is also derived from the cannabis plant, remains a Schedule I Controlled Substance according to Federal law. The difference, as defined within the Farm Bill, is that hemp refers to cannabis plants containing no more than 0.3% THC.
Is CBD Legal in Ohio
Short answer: Yes, hemp products are legal for manufacture and sale in the state of Ohio. CBD oil is derived from hemp and must contain less than 0.3% THC.
A year after the Farm Bill was signed into law, the USDA approved hemp production plans for three states and three Indian tribes.
- New Jersey
- Flandreau Santee Sioux
- Santa Rosa Cahuilla
- La Jolla Band of Luiseno
The USDA has continued to approve Hemp Programs for other states and tribes.
Ohio took a structured approach to the legality of hemp (and therefore CBD), first by passing SB 57 to decriminalize hemp.
In early 2020, Ohio unveiled their Hemp Program and began accepting applications for cultivators and processors. The program, managed by the Ohio Department of Agriculture, touts the many uses of hemp, stating, "Hemp is a cannabis plant, grown for its many industrial uses. It does not produce the intoxicating effects of the cannabis plant, marijuana. Hemp yields a strong fiber, used in textiles. The seed has nutritional value and can be eaten, and Cannabidiol, or CBD, can be extracted from the plant. CBD is now being used in food and dietary supplements."
Cultivation refers to the growth and storage of hemp plants and requires a license. The Ohio Hemp Program states that no hemp plants may be grown individually without a license.
Processing refers to manufacturing of hemp into products. All processors must obtain a license from the Ohio Department of Agriculture. In Ohio there are several kinds of processors:
- Grain Processing: Facilities which handle the grain component of hemp. These facilities produce products such as hemp grain, hemp grain oil, and products that contain these ingredients.
- Fiber Processing: Facilities which handle the fiber component of hemp. These facilities produce products such as rope, clothing, and building materials.
- Extraction Facility: Facilities that handle raw hemp flower and extract cannabinoids from the material. These facilities extract “crude oil” and further process this into various hemp products.
- Raw Flower: Facilities that are handling raw hemp flower, but are not an extraction facility. These types of facilities produce smokeable hemp flower, hemp cigarettes, etc.
- Wholesale: Facilities that use pre-processed cannabinoids in hemp products. Wholesale facilities distribute their products to a separate location where the products are produced.
- Retail: Facilities that use pre-processed cannabinoids in hemp products. Retail facilities sell their product in the same location where they are produced.
No license is required for businesses in Ohio to sell CBD products, as long as the level of THC is no more than 0.3% by weight.
Medical marijuana is also legal in Ohio. For registration into the program, a certified physician is required to diagnose patients with qualifying conditions.