The Latest on CBD Oil Under Florida Law
Ever since the US Farm Bill removed hemp from the list of controlled substances in late 2018, Florida has been in a state of limbo regarding how to regulate the plant’s derivatives – particularly the increasingly popular cannabidiol (CBD). Fortunately, the state recently followed suit to align state law with the federal statute. According to an article published by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Governor DeSantis signed a measure on June 25, 2019, that will allow the statute to regulate hemp derivatives and CBD.
However, the new statute doesn’t allow individuals and businesses free reign to possess, consume, sell, and produce CBD – which usually comes in oil form. Even with more relaxed standards, the law has not been fully implemented and local law enforcement may not be entirely clear on how constitutes a crime. As such, it’s still possible to be charged with criminal activity. Retaining a knowledgeable Florida drug crimes lawyer is critical to defending the charges, but an overview of the important points regarding CBD may be useful.
Why Confusion About Hemp and CBD Oils Exists: Hemp is derived from the same type of cannabis plant that produces marijuana, and both substances contain CBD. However, in marijuana, the levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are so high that they create a psychoactive, euphoric effect. The CBD in hemp is much lower, is non-euphoric, and has proven health benefits. It can be transformed into edibles, dietary supplements, lotions, and much more.
Under the Farm Bill and Florida’s new law, CBD oils from hemp are legal so long as they contain less than 0.03 percent THC; above that percentage, the substance is a controlled substance that’s banned by both federal and state laws.
New Legal Requirements: Under the new law, Florida has established a regulatory scheme that will mainly affect business owners instead of individual users. Anyone wishing to cultivate, process, or sell hemp and CBD products must register with the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. That person or entity must then obtain a certificate from an independent testing lab, stating that the product contains no more than 0.3 percent of THC. Plus, each product must be packaged with labelling that includes:
- A barcode or QR code that links to the certificate on file regarding the percentage of THC;
- The batch number;
- The website containing information regarding the batch;
- The expiration date;
- A statement that the product does not contain amounts of THC in excess of 0.3 percent of the total weight; and,
- Other information requirement by the Department.
Business owners are at risk of being charged with a drug crime if they don’t comply with the new requirements, especially considering the volume of CBD they carry in inventory. What you thought was legal could turn into a felony, which could mean prison time, fines, and other sanctions for a conviction.
Contact a Florida Drug Crimes Defense Attorney Today
If you’re facing charges for CBD, marijuana, or other drug offenses, it’s essential that you retain a lawyer that stays up to date on the changes in the law and local regulations. To schedule a free consultation of your case, please contact Fort Lauderdale drug crimes attorney Kevin J. Kulik.