CBD oil is made from cannabis extract. Cannabis, of course, has been illegal in the U.K. for almost a century. Put two and two together, and CBD oil’s presence in shops and online is difficult to understand.
Will CBD oil be banned? It won’t, because it’s a product made from hemp. Hemp has never been illegal to grow, provided you have a license, as it can’t be used recreationally. Hemp products are freely available whether as a CBD supplement, a pad of paper, or clothing. These products are becoming more popular because they’re eco-friendly. It’s therefore unthinkable that CBD oil will ever be made illegal.
While there may be a frustrating lack of research with regards to the use of hemp and cannabis products, at least hemp isn’t illegal. But that doesn’t mean you can make your own CBD oil from plants grown in your backyard. Read on to find out why…
Given that CBD oil is a cannabis product, it’s understandable if you think it may be banned. However, there are good reasons why it won’t be. The first is simple: the government haven’t announced any initiatives against CBD oil, or any planned legislation to ban it. There are no laws on the horizon that could potentially ban it.
There’s also the fact that studies coming out about it are nothing but positive—or, at least, not negative. There’s no indication that CBD has negative effects on your body. There’s therefore no push from either the medical community or the government to ban it.
And if you didn’t know, CBD oil doesn’t have the same effects as recreational marijuana use. It isn’t psychoactive (or in layman’s terms, it can’t get you high). So, again, there’s no reason for the government to consider banning it.
CBD oil is legal in the U.K. because it’s made from hemp—not the kind of cannabis that’s smoked recreationally. The main difference is THC, which is the psychoactive compound that’s present in cannabis. THC is what causes the high associated with the drug.
Hemp, however, is a strain that contains very low levels of THC. If you were to smoke it, hemp wouldn’t have any effect on you. Full spectrum CBD oil is an extract, and contains all of the compounds that hemp does, so it does contain THC. Full spectrum CBD oil contains small levels of CBD. Pure CBD isolate, though, is only CBD.
But, crucially, it doesn’t contain enough for the government to consider controlling it. By extension, any products made with hemp also aren’t on the government’s radar.
Another product you may have heard of is cannabis oil. Some people mistakenly call CBD oil cannabis oil, but they’re two different things. CBD oil is made through the process of extraction, which uses a solvent to dissolve something into a solution.
Cannabis oil is made in a simpler way. Cannabis is suspended in a carrier oil, e.g. olive oil, and left until the CBD and other cannabinoids are leached out. It’s the same idea as making chilli oil or garlic oil, where the base products are left suspended in the oil until the oil changes flavour.
Cannabis oil is generally illegal, because it’s made using strains of cannabis that cannot be legally grown. It’s the THC content which means it’s not legal. There is no licence available to grow cannabis strains with a high THC content, unlike hemp.
Whatever the case, CBD oil is better than cannabis oil. It’s a true extract, which has been taken from the base product by a solvent through an industrial process.
Can You Make Your Own CBD Oil?
While CBD oil is legal, that doesn’t mean you can make your own CBD oil. To legally grow hemp in the U.K., you need a licence from the Home Office. You can apply online to get a hemp license. You have to provide your contact details, as well as:
You’ll also have to pay for your licence. New licences cost £580, and renewals cost £326. You’ll also have to go through a DBS check, and inform local police before you start growing.
So, if you jump through all these hoops, you’ll be allowed to legally grow hemp. If you don’t, your crop and any products will be seized, and you could face charges. If you have the required licence, you’ll then need specialist equipment—some of which can be expensive. All in all, it’s better to buy high quality CBD online instead.
The production and procurement of hemp is tightly regulated simply because, as a product, it’s similar to cannabis. If it were unregulated, it’s easy to imagine how people could illegally grow marijuana for recreational use. For example, it would be easy to hide one or two recreational cannabis strain plants in a harvest of hemp.
In the same way that the government aren’t considering regulating CBD oil, they aren’t considering deregulating hemp, either.
This is one area where the U.S. is ahead of the curve. At the same time as marijuana is being made legal in states across America, hemp, too, has been removed from government oversight. The 2018 Farm Bill federally deregulated the substance, meaning that anyone can grow hemp, provided that it’s legal to do so as per state law. According to Bloomberg, the legal market for CBD oil will be worth $22 billion by 2022—and this bill only helps.
If the U.K. followed suit, it would be great news for CBD manufacturers and advocates alike. More manufacturers would be able to enter the market, ensuring lower prices and greater choice for the consumer.