Is CBD Oil in California Legal? Where Should You Buy It in California?

Posted on August 12 2021

CBD is gaining in popularity across the country and California has not been left behind. However, there are still a lot of questions concerning its legal status and accessibility. Is CBD legal federally? Is CBD legal in all states? Here is a guide to CBD oil in California, including its legal status.

Is CBD Legal in California? 

The legality of CBD is not as clear as black and white. Numerous factors come into play to determine whether the CBD product you are using is legal or not. However, California is one of the most liberal states in the country and, as such, was the first state to approve and legalize medical marijuana use as early as 1996. Two decades later, it was one of the first states to legalize adult-use marijuana.  
As for CBD (hemp-derived), the state is consistent with the federal legislation on the matter. For starters, CBD is prohibited as a dietary supplement or as a food and drinks additive and ingredient. Until the state determines it is safe for consumption, or federal laws do so, you cannot use CBD products (edibles) as food.  
However, marijuana-derived CBD is also legal in the state and that includes edibles and other products. You can therefore opt for that option. But remember that this substance is still illegal at the federal level.

Do You Need a Prescription to Buy CBD in California? 

No. As long as you're over 21 years, you can buy CBD. All you need is an identification card to show you are over the legal age. For those with a medical card, you can easily get CBD in the state.

Do You Need a Medical Card to Buy CBD in California?  

You do not necessarily need a medical card to buy CBD in California. But numerous benefits come with being a medical card holder during a purchase. For starters, there are tax benefits that recreational users do not enjoy.

Plus, with a medical and recommendation card, someone under the age of 21 can access CBD for medical purposes. You also get access to a wider range of CBD dispensaries, meaning easier access for you. The list of benefits is endless.   

Is Traveling with CBD Legal in California?  

Yes, there are no travel restrictions within the state for either marijuana-derived or hemp-derived CBD. While it's still fine to travel with hemp-derived CBD when crossing state borders, you cannot do the same for marijuana-derived CBD as it's still illegal at the federal level. However, if you have a medical card, you will not encounter any legal problems during your travels.  

How Did Cannabis Laws in California Change Throughout the Years?

Like in every other state, cannabis laws have changed in California. Most people agree that the change has been for the better. The state wasn't always as liberal as it is now with cannabis legislation. For starters, medical marijuana only became legalized in 1996. For patients with conditions under which cannabis can help or support, they need to get a recommendation letter from their doctor and also apply for a medical marijuana card.  
Additionally, it wasn't until 2016 that recreational marijuana was legalized. This allowed anyone 21 years and above to buy cannabis from a licensed recreational retailer. Adult-use cannabis is different from medical use, in that you do not need a medical card or a qualifying medical condition to buy cannabis.  
The next major change came with the 2018 Farm bill. This allowed or legalized the use of hemp-derived CBD as long as it contains a THC amount that's at least 0.3% or lower and stays in line with the federal laws. However, hemp-derived CBD is prohibited as a beverage and food additive or supplement. In 2019, the AB 228 bill was introduced by the state. However, it didn't pass due to delays caused partly by the pandemic. This bill would have legalized the use of hemp-derived CBD in foods and beverages as well as cosmetics.  

Marijuana-derived CBD in California

Marijuana-derived CBD is CBD extracted from cannabis. Usually, marijuana has a high content of THC, and as such, marijuana-derived CBD may have a high content of the psychoactive substance. In California, marijuana-derived CBD is legal for adult use and medical use. All its products are also legal with no restrictions. Additionally, anyone 21 or older can access it with or without a medical card.

Hemp-derived CBD in California  

CBD derived from industrial hemp is legal in California in compliance with federal legislation. Hemp-derived CBD should have a THC content lower than 0.3%. Anything higher is considered marijuana-derived. Moreover, it's illegal to use hemp-derived CBD products in foods and drinks.  

Where to Buy CBD Oil in California  

CBD oil is one of the most commonly sought-after CBD products in California. You can get it from retail stores online or in physical stores. However, CBD is not as closely regulated in the state and you must find a reputable store to purchase from when the need arises. The good news is, you can buy CBD oil in licensed CBD dispensaries across the state. Still, ensure you do adequate research for the best deals and high-quality products.  

The Downsides of Buying CBD Locally in California  

Although it's easier to buy CBD locally in the state, it comes with several downsides. The most common one involves buying unsafe products due to lack of information on the test results on the products. Also, it's quite difficult to verify the legality of the seller or their license status. However, online, there are ways to cross-check the legal status of a seller, the brand and even check out the reviews.  

Shop Online For Best-Quality CBD Products in California  

Online shopping is convenient and the best way to get high-quality CBD products in the state. Online reviews are vital in your search for the best online stores and CBD brands. All these reviews are important while doing your research and will allow you to get the best quality products. You can find all of Elixinol’s products, like our best-selling Sleep Good Night Capsules, our full-spectrum Daily Balance Tincture, and our broad-spectrum Active Sports Gel all on our website. Happy shopping!

How to Find the Source of High-Quality CBD in California  

You can start by checking the hemp source of the CBD. It's always wise to go for organic hemp as a source, since it doesn't use a lot of chemicals and pesticides. You can also check the extraction method used. CBD can be extracted using numerous methods. CO2 total extraction is the best method used as it maintains the original chemical profile of the hemp product. 
Moreover, taking advantage of third-party lab reports will ensure that you get high-quality CBD oil in California. Lastly, make a point of staying away from brands that exaggerate the efficiency and potency of their products.  

Final Thoughts  

CBD oil in California is legal for everyone above the age of 21 and is readily available. Even so, you still need to take precautions and only purchase after adequate research to avoid low-quality products.