Why Can’t You Buy CBD on Amazon?
Cannabidiol, better known by its much cooler name CBD, is just about everywhere these days. It’s like the Chris Pratt of cannabinoids, it has got its fingers in everything. Every time I turn around, it’s in something else. You can find it in gummies, chocolates, oils, tinctures, beverages, and even skin creams. But one place you should not be looking for your CBD needs is your friendly neighborhood mega-retailer, Amazon. Jeff Bezos is another guy with his fingers in everything, but one thing he’s not pedaling is CBD. I can already hear some of you challenging me on this through my computer screen. “Amazon has everything, Scott! I’m looking at gummies on Amazon right now! Look here, they’ve got oils too!” Don’t get fooled. If you think you’re looking at CBD on Amazon, you’re most likely actually seeing hemp in CBD’s clothing. Let’s take a closer look at why you can’t buy CBD on Amazon, the products that are hoping to trick you, and how to make sure you’re making the right decision when looking to buy a CBD product.
Can You Buy CBD on Amazon?
No. I think I made that clear in the introduction you just read, but let’s say it again for the people in the back row. No, you cannot buy CBD on Amazon.
The reason is simple. They have a policy prohibiting it. Amazon is a massive corporation that sells thousands of products across state and international boundaries, so keeping everything above board is a daunting task for Amazon. Because of the full breadth and scope of Amazon’s retail business, they have a pretty long list of prohibited products, just to make sure they don’t accidentally wander into issues where the laws of one locale don’t exactly jibe with the laws of another. Because they’re making billions of dollars in retail revenue, it’s easier to just stay out of the market altogether than to risk a retailer acting in bad faith getting them into any kind of legal trouble. If you dive into that list of prohibited products on Amazon’s website, you’ll eventually come across a line that says “Oils, supplements, or ingestibles that are derived from or contain cannabidiol (CBD), THC, or otherwise related to cannabis.” So, there it is, in black and white. You really can’t buy CBD on Amazon.
Can You Not Buy CBD on Amazon Because It’s Illegal?
No, in the United States the sale of CBD products is federally legal. In 2018, congress passed what is known as the Farm Bill. This bill made the production of hemp and hemp products federally legal in the United States. CBD is derived from hemp plants, so it is federally legal thanks to this 2018 Farm Bill. Amazon does not prohibit the sale of CBD on their site because it is illegal in United States, but rather to simply avoid any risk of international discrepancies in the law as well as eliminating the potential for disreputable sources to use their website as a venue to pedal unregulated products.
What Are These Products I’m Seeing On Amazon?
Let’s get back to that imaginary voice I heard arguing with me through my computer screen earlier. If you go on Amazon and type CBD into that little search bar, you’re going to see some products pop up. Unfortunately, these products are going to be “hemp oil” or “hemp gummies”. You’re probably thinking, “Didn’t you just tell me CBD comes from hemp?” And yes, I did. But not all hemp products are created equally. Hemp oil and hemp gummies are made from the seeds of the hemp plant, rather than the plant itself. It is only from the hemp plant itself that you’re going to be able to extract the chemical compounds known as cannabinoids. CBD is one these cannabinoids, and these compounds interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system to help your body regulate a wide variety of internal processes. It’s this interplay between cannabinoids and the body’s endocannabinoid system that gives CBD it’s therapeutic value. Hemp oil and hemp gummies that are made from the seeds of the hemp plant may have some supplemental benefits of their own, but they do not contain the cannabinoid compounds, like CBD, that help support the endocannabinoid system. For a more in depth break on the difference hemp seed oil and CBD, you can read our article here.
Making a Good CBD Purchasing Decision
So, what have we learned so far? Even though CBD is perfectly legal in the United States, you can’t buy it on Amazon because Jeff Bezos said no, but that doesn’t stop some people from trying to trick you with hemp oil and gummies. How are you supposed to get your CBD then? Smartly. That’s how. If you want an in-depth guide on what to look for when purchasing CBD, you can read our article on how best to go about it, but for now let’s walk through some simple steps you can take to make sure when you buy your CBD, you’re getting exactly what you’re looking for.
Picking A Type of CBD
The first thing you’re going to want to do is decide what type of CBD product you’re in the market for. The three options you’re going to be considering are full spectrum, broad spectrum, and isolate. A full spectrum product is going to contain not only CBD, but all the other cannabinoids that were present in the hemp plant used to make it, including small amounts of THC. A full spectrum CBD product helps to produce what is known as the “entourage effect” where the full range of cannabinoids work together to create a deeper therapeutic effect. It is worth noting, that because full spectrum does include small amounts of THC, it may be picked up by a drug test. Broad spectrum CBD contains many, but not all the cannabinoids in the hemp plant, and in fact some producers have proprietary blends of cannabinoids that they believe can also create an entourage effect. The simplest form of CBD is the isolate, which is strictly CBD with no other cannabinoids present. Selecting between these three types of CBD products will be based on the depth of effect you’re looking for, your sensitivity to other cannabinoids such as THC, and whether or not drug testing might be an issue in your immediate future.
Reading the Product Label
Once you’ve decided on the type of CBD you want to purchase, it’s time to get familiar with the specific product you’re considering, and the best way to do that is to read the label or product description. A CBD legal should include a wide list of information, including:
- Name and address of the manufacturer
- Cannabinoid content
- Ingredients (including non-cannabis ingredients)
- Net quantity
- Lot, batch, or control number
- Production date
- Expiration date
- Instructions on how to use or store product
- Suggested serving size or dosing instructions
- Warning labels
- QR code for lab results
When reading a CBD label, things like the expiration date are important to check, but you’ll also want to pay special attention to the ingredients, especially if you have dietary restrictions or allergies. CBD products can also contain additional ingredients that help aid their effects, like melatonin for aiding in sleep, or witch hazel for arthritis pain relief.
This is a big one. I cannot stress enough how important it is to make sure that the product you buy has been tested by a third-party, and those results are available to you. You will find these results in the form of a Certificate of Analysis or COA. These lab results will not only give you a breakdown of the cannabinoids present in your product, but they’ll also ensure that the product does not contain chemical compounds that could harm you, like heavy metals and pesticides. You can learn all about reading a COA here.
Not only does a COA provide you with an abundance of valuable information, but it can also provide you with the peace of mind that the product you are purchasing comes from a reputable source and is made with high quality ingredients. If you are looking to make a CBD purchase but don’t have access to a COA or third-party laboratory results, run in the other direction. At the Green Dragon, all our products are tested by a third party. You can find the COA of any product on its product page, so you know you’re getting only the best products available.
What’s In Your Cart?
Internet shopping is fantastic, and Amazon is a great option if you need free two-day shipping on a Bluetooth speaker or a four pack of toothpaste. But when it comes to purchasing CBD, Amazon just isn’t the place. That doesn’t mean you can’t get exactly what you need on the internet, what’s important is to be educated on the purchase you are making. Knowing what product you’re buying, what went into making it, and that it has been tested by a third-party are all crucial when buying CBD in person or online. Luckily, the Green Dragon can cover all your needs. If you find yourself with questions on what product is best for you, we’ve got you covered there as well. If you have any questions, we’d love to hear them in the comments below this article or through our contact page.