Among the biggest questions by potential CBD users in the growing market, there are few more popular on main search engines than, “how old do you have to be to buy CBD?” This is due in-part to the high concentration of minors and under-21 buyers interested in the product. Despite the interest, there still seems to be a substantive lack of clear information regarding the age requirements for purchasing CBD products and smoking CBD in the United States.
The reality is that there is no simple, straightforward answer to this question. Instead, the age requirements to buy CBD products, as well as smoke these products, varies significantly all over the country. Not only do potential buyers of CBD have to figure out what the age restrictions are from their governing bodies, but they also have to discern what restrictions specific retailers and smoke shops put on who is allowed to buy from the facility.
Nevertheless, this guide will detail some of the most relevant information concerning the age requirements and restrictions applied to the purchase and usage of smokable CBD. For the most part, CBD can be purchased and smoked by anyone over the age of eighteen. In select jurisdictions, this age is upped to twenty-one. But on the internet, a different set of rules and a loose enforcement mechanism create an entirely different situation.
A Changing Landscape
One major factor into the legality of CBD has always been the way the substance is approached by the federal government. Luckily for hopeful CBD lovers, the most recent “Farm Bill” from the United States government has completely legalized the hemp industry, and by extension the CBD oil market as well. While this might not change much for CBD users over 21 years of age in jurisdictions where the products were already sold, it will quickly shape the scene in some other parts of the country which were previously less friendly towards it.
Now, CBD oil will likely be sold in many of the smoke shops which have traditionally only sold tobacco and tobacco smoking supplies. This does mean that CBD will become more available and widely accessible for those with access to such lucrative smoke shops, the age required to enter the shop will also become a concern post-legislation for people under 21 looking to purchase CBD oil to smoke.
A Legal Grey Area
Hemp CBD oil should be available to people of all ages—at least in theory. The product does not induce a high and oftentimes comes without the harmful toxic materials found in other smokable products such as cigarettes or cigars. But a series of resounding legal restrictions and pervasive questions continue to make it harder for a clear answer to give way.
For one thing, many jurisdictions even before the legalization have limited the types of CBD that can be sold in any kind of shop. CBD with a THC percentage high enough to cause intoxication, for example, is generally disallowed from being sold in many parts of the country. But in those parts of the country where medical or recreational marijuana is legal—such as Colorado, Washington, California, and a list of other states—the products will often be sold in shops where the age restriction is 21 years old.
As it stands, the conflicting rules and regulations all over the country make it hard to give a straight yes-or-no answer on the question of “can I buy CBD in my jurisdiction?” Instead, readers are encouraged to conduct individualized research into their police departments and statutory regulations regarding CBD and age requirements. As a general rule, patrons above 21 years of age should almost always be in the clear, as they can certainly enter and purchase from any establishment that would carry CBD oil.
But for those under 21 and especially those CBD users under 18 years of age, the question is a much more important one. They are encouraged to reach out to their local P.D. and ask for clarification on the existing federal, state, and local rules that might prevent them from purchasing the CBD products they have had their eye on.
A Wild Online Scene
Many hemp guides online are quick to point out, however, that the online and brick-and-mortar spheres of the growing CBD industry vary greatly. In addition to a litany of concerns about regulation of product purity and other issues related to quality, some complain that there exist few clear restrictions on who can and cannot purchase CBD oil off the internet.
This is only a partially justified qualm. It is not true to say that there are no regulations on who is allowed to buy CBD from the internet; most websites do have restrictions about the age of their customers. For the most part, this age is always either eighteen or twenty-one, with many sites deferring to the same age rules employed by their local jurisdiction’s popular smoke shops.
But on the flip side, a lack of federal regulations on CBD and industrial hemp means that there are often little-to-know repercussions for customers who fudge on the age disclaimers and lie about their age to purchase CBD. So while in theory there are age requirements to buy CBD all over the internet, in reality there exist very few enforcement mechanisms to ensure that these rules are strictly adhered-to.
Who To Ask
Because of the multi-faceted and very complicated nature of the question, readers should reach out to reliable sources of government to find out if they can smoke CBD legally in their home or jurisdiction. Generally these sources include the Governor’s office, local police departments, the District Attorney’s office, the state representative’s office, or the office of a state or federal Senator.
Additionally, more specialized searches on the internet might yield jurisdiction-specific information on the legality of industrialized hemp and CBD smokable products for a specific age of user.