SB 57 followed federal law by outlining that hemp in Ohio must have a maximum of 0.3% THC by dry weight. Otherwise, it is considered marijuana and is illegal. State law also mandates that all growers and processors of hemp are licensed, and their CBD products must be tested.
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The industrial hemp program in Ohio has not taken off as expected due to the high costs and level of labor involved.
Industrial Hemp in Ohio
Also, gross income for hemp across the United States fell from $75,000 per acre in 2018 to $20,000 the following year. As it can cost up to $15,000 per acre to plant the crop and get it to market, profit margins are thin. Then there is a huge degree of competition which means farmers may not sell their crop.
Unlike many other states, Ohio doesn’t have the benefit of major drugstore chains selling hemp-derived CBD. Residents need to look for products at health food stores and local pharmacies. However, such items are potentially very expensive and not necessarily of the highest quality.
However, it is a different story for individuals without a medical marijuana card. The good news, at least, is that Ohio residents can use CBD oil. However, the product(s) in question must come from hemp and contain a maximum of 0.3% THC.
MMJ is legal in Ohio, and the program is becoming well-established. Recreational cannabis legalization may happen within the next few years. Until then, residents can purchase CBD oil in Ohio. The cannabinoid is legal for sale, possession, and use as long as it comes from hemp and contains a maximum of 0.3% THC.
Things changed with the passage of the 2014 Farm Bill, which recognized the difference between hemp and marijuana. The measure distinguished hemp as having less than 0.3% THC, while marijuana plants contained more than 0.3%.
In July 2019, Ohio passed SB 57, decriminalizing hemp and setting up a regulatory framework to license hemp cultivation. Ohio was one of many states that has regulated industrial hemp production as a crop following the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill.
Why is CBD sometimes illegal?
SB 57 requires licenses for growing or processing hemp are valid for three years and are not available to anyone convicted of drug-related charges in the past 10 years. No license is required to sell or purchase CBD in Ohio.
The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the list of controlled substances, though marijuana with more than 0.3% THC remains illegal at the federal level and in states without medical or recreational legalization. CBD derived from marijuana plants is, therefore, still illegal while hemp-derived CBD is legal.
There are no possession limits for hemp-derived CBD at this time. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps