Skip to content

The Unintended Consequences of Medical Marijuana and CBD Laws and Ordinances

While most medical marijuana and CBD laws and ordinances are passed with the best of intentions, they often have unintended consequences.

It’s often said that the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.

Where Indiana went wrong with their CBD law.

The Indiana legislature had the best of intentions when they passed their CBD law.

In April of 2017, Governor Eric Holcomb signed a bill legalizing cannabidiol oil or CBD oil provided a person had treatment resistant epilepsy and the THC content was .3% or less.

The problem was CBD oil was already legal in Indiana and being sold for the past year with no problems.

However, when the new Indiana CBD oil bill was signed by the Governor of Indiana in April, the Attorney General, the excise police and the Association of Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys, who are all anti-marijuana, used the new bill as an opportunity to say the new indiana bill was more restrictive than the federal law and excise police soon after raided 60 stores in Indiana removing over 3000 CBD products off their shelves.

CBD made from industrial hemp was legal under the Farm Bill Act since 2014

On February 7, 2014, President Obama signed the Farm Bill into law. Section 7606 of the act, Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research, defines industrial hemp as distinct from marijuana and authorizes institutions of higher education or state department’s of agriculture in states that legalized hemp cultivation to regulate and conduct research and pilot programs.

What is industrial hemp and how is it defined in the Farm Bill?

Industrial hemp is the non-psychoactive, low-THC, genetically distinct varieties of the plant Cannabis sativa. Hemp has absolutely no use as a recreational drug.

Section 7606 of the Farm Bill defines industrial hemp as “the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of such plant, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.”

So CBD made from industrial hemp containing .3% or less THC is legal federally.

In fact the FDA looks at products from industrial hemp as food and not marijuana.

CBD made from marijuana containing more than .3% THC is still federally illegal, although it is legal by state law in some states.

So any CBD products made from marijuana (more than .3% THC) would be illegal federally, but legal in some states with or without a medical marijuana card.

Thirty one (31) states have defined industrial hemp as distinct and removed barriers to its production. These states will be able to take immediate advantage of the industrial hemp research and pilot program provision, Section 7606 of the Farm Bill:

CaliforniaColoradoConnecticutDelawareFloridaHawaiiIllinoisIndianaKentuckyMaineMarylandMichiganMinnesotaMissouriMontanaNebraskaNevadaNew HampshireNew YorkNorth CarolinaNorth DakotaOregonPennsylvaniaRhode IslandSouth CarolinaTennesseeUtahVermontVirginiaWashington and West Virginia.

So why did Indiana  pass a bill to legalize CBD oil made from industrial hemp, when it was already legal federally?

That’s the million dollar question.

Possible reasons are the original CBD was a strain of marijuana cross bred with industrial hemp by the Stanley Brother’s known as Charlotte’s Web.

Charlotte’s Web was technically marijuana at the time because while it was high in CBD and low in THC, it still was rumored to contain around 1% THC and even later one of the Stanley Brother’s went on record on an interview that Charlotte’s Web contained approximately .5% THC. These amounts were still over the .3% cut off to be classified as industrial hemp and therefore was marijuana.

Since then Charlotte’s Web states that there were able to get their THC  content below .3% and now qualify as industrial hemp and able to sell to people without a medical marijuana card.

Although Charlottle’s Web has the highest current market share of CBD oil at around 7%. There are other  brands such as HempWorx which in my opinion is far superior to Charlotte’s Web.

Related Article:  Charlotte’s Web Compared to HempWorx CBD Oil

Another possible reason could be ignorance by Indiana state lawmakers when it comes to distinguishing CBD oil made from industrial hemp (.3% THC or less) being federally legal under the Farm BIll Act of 2014.

While Indiana’s Attorney General is anti-marijuana and anti-CBD oil, he may be technically right when it comes to Indiana law, but not federal law.

Attorney General for Indiana, Curtis Hill is an outspoken critic of marijuanaa and CBD oil.

He did use the recently poorly written Indiana CBD oil law to his advantage to block and delay Hoosier’s from continuing legal accessto  CBD oil through retail stores in Indiana.

However, many Hoosier’s are still able to gain access to high quality legal CBD from HempWorx online who ships direct to Indiana customers.

The author is not a legal expert or authorized to give legal advice. So please consult with an attorney familiar with the Indiana CBD law and Federal Farm Bill Act of 2014.

While the author believes CBD oil is legal in Indiana and all 50 states as long as it’s under .3% THC, I would not recommend selling CBD oil at a retail establishment in Indiana currently.

Instead buy online line for now at

The Attorney General of Indiana’s opinion will end up in court and we expect the judge will rule in  favor of CBD oil .3% or less TCH to  be ruled legal for all people in Indiana. 

Indiana’s mistakes on writing their CBD law should serve as an example to other states and local governments of what not to do.

In my home area of Michigan we currently have medical marijuana ordinances being implemented in my hometown of Bay City along with the neighboring communities of Bangor Township, Pinconning and Buena Vista.

Any new laws or ordinances regarding CBD oil made from industrial hemp should follow the federal guidelines below:

Make sure CBD oil made from industrial hemp is defined a having .3% of less THC and deemed a food to be legal for everyone to use without a marijuana license.

Make sure CBD oil made from marijuana is defined as having more than .3% THC and follows the normal rules and laws for marijuana.

This is what law makers need to do in Indiana and another other state or local government planning to enact CBD oil legislation.

To order legal non-GMO, organic, full spectrum, high quality CBD oil able to ship to all 50 states or to join our affiliate program to make money with CBD oil please visit