Cannabidiol (CBD), is an increasingly popular natural ingredient present in hemp and cannabis plants. It has received universal acceptance for its possible health advantages, which include pain alleviation, lowered anxiety levels, and better sleep. Yet, there is ambiguity over its legality and age limits because of its relationship with the cannabis plant.
In this article, we will explore how old you have to be to buy CBD in the USA, taking into account federal and state regulations.
Understanding CBD and Its Legality
Before diving into age restrictions, it’s important to understand the legality of CBD. The 2018 Farm Bill legalized the production and sale of hemp and hemp-derived products, including CBD, as long as they contain less than 0.3% THC, the psychoactive compound found in cannabis. However, the bill did not fully legalize marijuana and its derivatives, which remain illegal at the federal level. This means that CBD derived from marijuana plants is still considered illegal under federal law.
Federal Age Restriction for CBD
The federal government has not set a specific age requirement for purchasing CBD products. The 2018 Farm Bill did not include age restrictions for buying CBD, leaving it up to individual states to regulate. However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has stated that CBD products cannot be marketed as dietary supplements or added to food products, which means that they cannot be sold to minors under the age of 18.
In addition, the FDA has approved one CBD-based medication called Epidiolex, which is used to treat seizures associated with two rare and severe forms of epilepsy. Epidiolex is only available with a prescription and can only be prescribed to patients aged two years and older. This means that technically, anyone under the age of two cannot legally consume CBD, even with a prescription.
State-Level CBD Age Restrictions
Although the federal government has not set a specific age requirement for purchasing CBD, individual states have the authority to regulate the sale of CBD products within their borders. As of March 2023, the majority of states have set a minimum age of 18 to purchase CBD products. Some states have set the age limit higher, at 21 years old.
Here is a breakdown of the current age restrictions for purchasing CBD in each state as of March 2023:
States that have an 18-year-old minimum legal CBD buying age:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
States that have an 21-year-old minimum legal CBD buying age:
Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wyoming.
It’s important to note that these age restrictions can change, as states may update their laws or regulations. It’s always best to check with your state’s laws to ensure compliance.
Factors Affecting CBD Age Limits
There are several factors that may influence a state’s decision to set an age restriction for purchasing CBD products. One of the main factors is the potential health risks associated with consuming CBD, particularly for children and adolescents. While CBD is generally considered safe for most people, there is limited research on its long-term effects, especially on children and adolescents. Therefore, some states may decide to set age limits to protect minors from the potential risks of consuming CBD products.
Another factor that may influence age limits for CBD products is the potential for these products to be misused or abused, particularly among minors. Although CBD does not have the psychoactive effects of THC, it can still be misused if taken in high doses or combined with other substances. Some states may set age restrictions to discourage minors from using CBD products inappropriately or to prevent them from accessing these products altogether.
In addition, states may set age restrictions based on their overall approach to cannabis and drug policy. States that have legalized marijuana for recreational or medical use may be more likely to set a lower age limit for purchasing CBD products, while states with more conservative drug policies may set a higher age limit. In some cases, age limits for CBD products may be aligned with age limits for other substances, such as tobacco or alcohol.
Another factor that may impact age limits for CBD products is the type of product being sold. For example, some states may have different age limits for CBD products that are meant to be ingested versus those that are meant to be applied topically. States may also have different age limits for products that contain higher levels of THC versus those that contain only trace amounts.
Finally, the enforcement of age limits for CBD products may also depend on the types of retailers selling these products. Some states may require age verification for online purchases of CBD products, while others may only require age verification for in-person purchases. In some cases, the sale of CBD products may be limited to certain types of retailers, such as licensed dispensaries or pharmacies.
Overall, there are several factors that may influence a state’s decision to set an age restriction for purchasing CBD products. These factors may include the potential health risks associated with CBD, the potential for CBD products to be misused or abused, a state’s overall drug policy, the type of product being sold, and the enforcement of age limits.
Conclusion: Navigating CBD Age Restrictions
Navigating the age restrictions for purchasing CBD products can be confusing, as the laws vary depending on the state. As of March 2023, most states have set a minimum age of 18 to purchase CBD products, although some states have set the age limit higher at 21.
It’s important to note that while CBD is generally considered safe for most people, there is limited research on its long-term effects, particularly on children and adolescents. In addition, CBD products can be misused or abused, particularly among minors. As a result, it’s always best to follow your state’s laws and regulations when it comes to purchasing CBD products.
If you’re under the age limit for purchasing CBD products in your state, you may be able to consume CBD with a doctor’s recommendation. However, it’s always best to consult with your healthcare provider before taking any new supplements or medications.
Overall, as with any health product, it’s important to do your research and make informed decisions about using CBD. By following the age restrictions set by your state, you can ensure that you’re using CBD products safely and responsibly.