Amazon's Rules and Regulations on Selling CBD Oil

Written By: Lex Pelger

Oct 1, 2020

Amazon's Rules and Regulations on Selling CBD Oil 

There’s a lot of confusion out there as to whether or not you can buy CBD oil on Amazon. While it’s legal to sell cannabidiol (CBD) products online in all 50 states, there are rules and regulations for both Amazon and online US sales in general, and it all gets a little difficult to keep up with. So, what are the rules and can you buy CBD oil on Amazon? Here are 10 things you should know.  

 

  1. First thing’s first: Let’s talk about online sales rules in general (not just Amazon). Yes, it’s technically legal to sell CBD products online in every US state, but the oil has to be sourced from industrial hemp. In addition, the THC content must be under 0.3 percent. Sellers must comply with the rules of their own states as well, as those can also vary. 
  2. As for Amazon, well, that’s another story. CBD falls under the category of ‘drug.’ While CBD is legal in the US thanks to the Farm Bill of 2018, it’s still a regulated substance. And Amazon restricts the sale of supplements that contain a controlled substance. So why are they so paranoid?  
  3. CBD is derived from the cannabis plant, which is also the genus of marijuana, considered an illegal Schedule 1 controlled substance. Essentially, Amazon isn’t trying to get into the controlled substance game. It’s too risky. (Although let’s be clear: You can’t get high on CBD oil.)  
  4. As such, sellers on Amazon are not allowed to list products containing cannabidiol. That includes fullspectrum hemp oil, rich hemp oil, and products that have been identified as containing CBD by LegitScript.  
  5. What’s LegitScript? A global leader in merchant and product certification and monitoring in the e-commerce and payment sectors, LegitScript launched a certification program last year for legally compliant CBD products and websites. Sellers/manufacturers must apply via LegitScript to certify CBD products and websites are in compliance with USDA, FDA, and DEA regulations, in addition to laws that are state specific.   
  6. If Amazon doesn’t allow CBD to be sold on its site, why are there seemingly limitless options for CBD oil when you search for it on Amazon? Because while CBD is banned from the site, hemp oil is not. Remember, it specifically prohibits “rich hemp oil” and “full-spectrum hemp oil.” That leaves a lot of gray area and room for folks to sell other kinds of hemp oil and call it CBD oil, even when it doesn’t actually contain cannabidiol. If the CBD contents are zero, Amazon is A-OK with it being sold on its platform.  
  7. So what’s the difference between hemp seed oil and CBD oil? Amazon doesn’t exactly distinguish this, so merchants can describe their products as “hemp seed oil,” or “hemp extract,” for example, without suffering any consequences. In reality, hemp and cannabis both come from Cannabis sativa. Cannabis contains THC, which makes you high, and CBD that contains some THC. But CBD oil is made from the leaves, flowers, and stalks of a hemp plant, the only part of the plant where CBD is found. So hemp seed oil, which is obviously produced from the seeds, contains little to no CBD content. Therefore, the hemp oil, or hempseed oil, that you see on Amazon is, while legal, free of the benefits of CBD.  
  8. So what good is hemp oil? It does have some benefits. It’s high in antioxidants, omega-3, and 6 fatty acids. It’s great for the skin, reducing signs of aging, and has plenty of nutrients. But that’s probably not what a lot of the oils on Amazon are trying to sell you.  
  9. So how do you spot fake CBD on Amazon? Well, since it’s illegal to sell CBD on Amazon, most of it will be from hemp oil companies that want you to believe it’s CBD oil. They’ll proudly display marijuana leaves, proudly highlight that it’s derived from Cannabis sativa, but they can’t be listed on Amazon unless it’s a hempseed oil that has almost no CBD. 
  10. When in doubt, always buy from a company that has had their product tested in a lab and can certifiably say that it is what it is. Find a company with its own store/website. It’s a jungle out there, but stay alert and you’ll be just fine.  

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