CBD, Cannabis and Related Products

Marijuana is legal for recreational use in 24 states and the District of Columbia. It’s an industry with potential for growth, and convenience retailers reasonably want to be involved. But confusion runs rampant about what is allowed—and what is not—under federal law. 

Marijuana, any compounds derived from it and associated products remain completely illegal under federal law. This had applied to hemp and hemp products (like hemp-derived CBD) until passage of the Farm Bill in December 2018. The bill removed industrial hemp (and, by proxy, hemp-derived CBD) from its previous classification as a Schedule I controlled substance under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), making it legal for interested parties to produce, distribute and dispense it.

The 2018 Farm Bill did not change to the FDA’s authority to regulate the sales of food products, dietary supplements and certain body care products containing hemp-derived CBD under the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act)—a significant hurdle for manufacturers interested in distributing and retailers interested in selling such products.

The following resource (NACS member-only PDF) can help retailers navigate the gray areas around the sale of CBD and CBD-related products. You can review a summary of cannabis-related legislation (NACS member-only PDF) introdued in a previous Congress that includes broad legalization measures and more niche legislation that could have affected convenience retailers.