Since then, the market for CBD products has exploded across the nation. But since the product is still relatively new to most of us, you may be wondering: What is the difference between hemp and CBD? Read on for all the basics you need to know about hemp and CBD.
What Is Hemp?
Hemp is a plant of the cannabis species. Hemp contains at most 0.3 percent THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is what makes certain cannabis plants psychoactive. Since hemp’s concentration of THC is so low, it is non-psychoactive and cannot get you high. In contrast, marijuana plants contain between 5 and 20 percent THC, meaning they are psychoactive and can get you high.
What Is CBD?
In 2014, the U.S. passed the 2014 Farm Bill, lifting federal restrictions on the sale of hemp-based products. This inspired many states to enact policies legalizing the sale of hemp — and therefore CBD. Then, in December 2018, Congress passed the 2018 Farm Bill, removing hemp from the Controlled Substances Act, making it legal for hemp-based products containing a small amount of THC (including CBD) to be sold in all 50 states.
CBD and hemp both come from cannabis sativa, the cannabis plant. Both come in many forms and have a variety of uses. Neither contains any significant amount of THC, so neither will get you high.
These days, hemp is used to make a variety of commercial and industrial products, including rope, textiles, clothing, paper, insulation and biofuel. Plus, hemp seeds can be eaten raw or made into a liquid and used for baking or for beverages such as hemp milk. They can also be made into oil for shampoo, soap or body lotion.
The 2018 Farm Bill changed hemp from a controlled substance to an agricultural commodity, legalizing hemp federally, which made it easier for farmers to get production licenses, loans to grow hemp and federal crop insurance.
CBD comes in many forms, some of which are edible, others that can be smoked or used on the body’s exterior, like a rub or cream. CBD oil, for example, is made by extracting CBD from the cannabis plant, then diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil.
Hemp has been grown for thousands of years in Asia and the Middle East, but it also has a history in the U.S. For example, hemp was used by the U.S. during World War II to make uniforms, canvas and rope.
The only CBD medication that is currently approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is Epidiolex, which the agency approved in 2018 for the treatment of two types of epilepsy. But many people use CBD as a treatment for various ailments — most commonly, pain and anxiety.
Hemp is a strain of the ‘cannabis sativa’ plant species.
So, does that mean that CBD and hemp are the same thing?
You might know that the 2018 Farm Bill legalized the production of hemp, which effectively legalized CBD, too.