In Short: Yes, it does.
Unsurprisingly, there is a lot of confusion around the issue of hemp and CBD. This is in part due to the gray area of CBD legality and also a general misunderstanding about CBD in the mind of the general public. So, the aim of this post is to help you become a better consumer and discern amongst the wide variety of products available in retails stores and even the largest of online stores, Amazon.
Hemp vs. Marijuana
To start, we must first define Hemp and it’s probably easiest to do that by comparing it to its close varietal, Cannabis/Marijuana. For starters, they are the same plant, Cannabis Sativa. Cannabis Sativa is unique because it is rich in over 65 Cannabinoids. These molecular structures are essentially neurotransmitters that work in conjunction with your immune and endocrine systems to regulate your body.
While research is fast arriving by the day, we do know that some of these cannabinoids have profound impacts on the treatment of pain, inflammation, stress, anxiety, CTE, depression, insomnia, digestive irregularities, epilepsy, and much more. Of the 65 known cannabinoids in Cannabis Sativa, the most most widely known and researched are CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol).
Why is Hemp Legal?
So Hemp and Marijuana contain both THC and CBD, in addition to many other active cannabinoid compounds. The distinction comes in terms of the concentration. Just as farmers have engineered certain fruits to omit seed production, for hundreds of years farmers have been actively changing the genomes and phenotypes of the Cannabis Sativa plant, resulting in many different varieties that are often optimized for a specific purpose.
As a result, hemp is merely Cannabis Sativa that basically contains trace amounts or zero THC. Conversely, certain hemp varieties have also been engineered to produce massive concentrations of CBD while still omitting THC from the final output. Plants that contain between 0.00%-0.03% THC are classified as Hemp.
How do I know if my Hemp products contain CBD in them?
Now that we know why Hemp is different, how do we know if it contains CBD? Unfortunately this question is not so easy to answer. At the moment, CBD or hemp are not regulated by the FDA, leading to differences in labeling practices. The best way to find out if a hemp product contains CBD is by checking the bottle ingredients and/or viewing the description on the website.
Often times, you will see descriptions like “Aerial Parts” or “Full-spectrum”, which indicates that the hemp is extracted from flower or the hemp contains “the full spectrum” of cannabinoids, respectively. Also, many producers will indicate a dosage in milligrams, even if it doesn’t expressly state “CBD”. You can be confident the “milligrams” alludes to CBD. And while this information may be neglected on the label, this is most likely done to avoid controversy with regulatory authorities who are attempting to treat hemp in the same category as marijuana. However, it is entirely possible to have hemp extracts that contain no CBD or THC, so its important to do your research.
“Often times, you will see descriptions like ‘Aerial Parts’ or ‘Full-spectrum,’ which indicates the hemp is extracted from flowering parts or the hemp contains ‘the full spectrum’ of cannabinoids (all 65), respectively.”
Conclusion: Contact the company you purchased your product from.
In the end, Hemp-derived CBD products, while very effective, are often also very expensive. The best way to be sure if a hemp product contains CBD is to contact the company directly and ask them. Many hemp products do contain CBD and there is little difference between the effectiveness of hemp-derived CBD versus marijuana-derived CBD. For this reason, we do recommend consumers source hemp-derived CBD products for their healthcare as its the only way to know you are in compliance with current law.