The legal status of hemp and CBD is a complex issue that has been the subject of much debate in recent years. The U. S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the U.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are responsible for determining which substances should be added, eliminated, or reclassified. Under the Controlled Substances Act, the federal government places each drug in a classification, known as a list, based on its medical value and potential for abuse. The drugs, substances and certain chemicals used to make drugs are classified into five different categories or lists depending on the acceptable medical use of the drug and the potential for drug abuse or dependence. Hemp is defined as the plant Cannabis sativa L., and products that contain any of its ingredients must declare them by name in the list of ingredients.
The ingredients derived from hemp seeds that are the subject of these GRAS notices contain only traces of THC and CBD, which the seeds can collect during harvesting and processing when in contact with other parts of the plant. The FDA has concluded that marijuana does not have a federally approved medical use for treatment in the United States and, therefore, remains a Schedule I controlled substance under federal law. However, if the federal government recognized the medicinal value of marijuana through a Schedule 2 classification, advocates expected federal agencies to be much more receptive to paying for and approving medical research on marijuana. Even so, if the cannabis plant has more than 0.3 percent THC on a dry weight basis, it is considered a Schedule I controlled substance. This change could speed up the process for researchers to study cannabis and its derivatives, including CBD, which fall under the definition of hemp, which could accelerate the development of new drugs. Despite this, there is still a lot of confusion regarding the legal status of CBD, including the CBD class schedule and whether CBD or CBD oil are Schedule I drugs.
While a reclassification would be a symbolic victory for legalization advocates, it wouldn't have much practical effect. The FDA has also stated that cosmetics are defined as “items intended to be rubbed, poured, sprayed or sprayed onto the human body”, a description that fits many hemp-derived CBD products. It's important to note that this classification system has been frequently questioned by people who are concerned that law enforcement will use the CSA to excessively criminalize substances that may not actually be as dangerous as the DEA claims.