CBD Oil in Wisconsin – It’s Not Simply Legal
Cannabidiol, or CBD oil, is increasingly available in stores across the state of Wisconsin.
Under federal law, CBD oil is an industrial hemp product, and it is legal to possess and distribute.
However, because CBD oil contains a detectable quantity of tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, it is still illegal to possess in Wisconsin unless you have a certification from a physician pursuant to Wisconsin statute 961.32(2m)(b).
Possession of CBD oil without a certification could be prosecuted as a misdemeanor criminal offense. Delivery or supplying of CBD oil to individuals who do not have a certification could be prosecuted as a felony offense.
So why is CBD oil being sold all over Wisconsin? Because cannabidiol’s legal status conflicts with Wisconsin’s industrial hemp law. As a result, the Wisconsin Attorney General has advised Wisconsin law enforcement not to enforce the law as written.
Still, because it is illegal in Wisconsin, it is advised that if you use or distribute CBD oil that you have (or your customers have) a clinician’s certification or prescription to avoid possible criminal charges.
Updated November 13, 2018
33 East Main St. Suite 500
Madison, WI 53703
In matters involving business law, real estate, estate planning or other areas, the attorneys at Murphy Desmond S.C. are committed to exceeding your expectations.
CBD in Wisconsin: Where Can You Buy It?
Marijuana is illegal in the state of Wisconsin, and there are heavy penalties attached to cannabis ‘crimes’. For example, possession of any amount is classified as a misdemeanor and could result in a six-month prison sentence! If you are caught for a second time, the charge is upgraded to a felony, and you could spend the next three and a half years in jail.
Historically, Wisconsin was a major industrial hemp producer. In November 2017, State Governor, Scott Walker, signed a law which legalized industrial hemp cultivation, as long as it contained less than 0.3% THC. Hemp farmers were able to enjoy their first legal harvest in Wisconsin since 1958, and it is hoped that the market will grow thanks to the new legislation.
When a local newspaper went to the town of Sussex, it became clear why farmers were so keen to get in on the hemp action. A 200-gram jar of CBD is estimated to be worth at least $10,000! If you have enough land, know-how, and start-up capital, it is possible to become a major player in a fledgling industry.
There is only one problem; no one knows what the legal status of CBD oil in Wisconsin is!
Legality of CBD Oil in Wisconsin
CBD producers in Wisconsin say the demand far outstrips the supply at present. It is not unusual for a moderately sized CBD business to take in $50,000 a month. However, it is not clear whether all these customers are breaking state law. Federally speaking, the Farm Bill of 2018 fully legalized hemp growing in the United States (must contain a maximum of 0.3% THC); yet states have their own laws on CBD consumption.
Many sellers of CBD suggest that it is perfectly legal in Wisconsin, but the law is unclear. In April 2014, Wisconsin Act 267 was enacted which allowed the use of CBD for patients with seizure disorders . By May 2015, it was still nearly impossible to find a doctor who would prescribe cannabidiol in Wisconsin.
In February 2017, Senate Bill 10 was passed. It allowed people to possess CBD oil under certain circumstances. Governor Walker signed the bill into law in April 2017, but what did it mean? First of all, you needed to have the written approval of a physician if it is CBD from marijuana; the seller also needs a special license. If the CBD comes from industrial hemp, it automatically falls beneath the 0.3% threshold. As a result, it is theoretically legal to sell, purchase, and possess CBD.
That seemed clear enough, but on April 27, 2018, the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) decided to confuse everyone. It issued a memo which said that possessing or distributing CBD oil in the state was illegal, even if it contains minimal THC. A few days later, Brad Schimel, the state attorney general, added to the chaos by reversing this statement.
In other words, the DOJ contradicted state and federal laws , and Schimel contradicted the DOJ within a week! What we do know is that possession of CBD oil with a THC content of over 0.3% IS illegal. Or do we? If you are looking for clarification, the Wisconsin State Legislature does not help.
According to statute 961.32(2m) (b), you can possess CBD without any psychoactive effects if you have “certification stating that the individual possesses cannabidiol to treat a medical condition.” This means you need a physician’s letter dated less than a year from when you possess the CBD.
It isn’t an ideal state of affairs, but it seems to be okay to purchase CBD oil if it has less than 0.3% THC, and comes from industrial hemp. Hope that clears everything up! We have not heard of any horror stories from Wisconsin where people were arrested for buying and using CBD oil, and sellers have no issues transporting CBD oil to the state.
How CBD is Different to THC
Both compounds are found in marijuana, but CBD is also found in abundance in industrial hemp, whereas THC is not. THC is known for causing a psychoactive high, while CBD provides you with similar possible medical benefits without intoxication. THC is federally illegal and also illegal in 17 states; CBD is legal almost everywhere.
It is odd to think that there are such major differences between a pair of compounds that share an almost identical molecular formula of C21H30O2. The difference in molecular mass between the two is just 0.005 g/mol, with CBD slightly heavier. The primary reason for the differences lies in their respective impacts on the cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2, found in the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
CB1 receptors are primarily found in the regions of the brain responsible for physiological and mental processes such as emotion, motor coordination, and memory. CB2 receptors are generally found in the gastrointestinal (GI) and immune systems. THC binds more closely with the CB1 receptors than the CB2 receptors. Meanwhile, CBD binds with the CB2 receptor but doesn’t bond with the CB1 receptor.
The mere presence of CBD could be enough to negate the bond between THC and the CB1 receptors. In other words, CBD doesn’t get you high, and it can actually reduce the psychoactive impacts of THC.
What Medical Problems Can CBD Oil Treat in Wisconsin?
CBD oil has a number of apparent medical benefits . Proponents say it can help treat anxiety disorders, chronic pain, depression, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Crohn’s disease, and dozens of other conditions. We have heard many stories of how patients on NSAIDs and opiates for decades have been able to wean themselves off medication; such is the positive impact the CBD oil has had.
It all has to do with the ECS which is always trying to attain homeostasis, or balance, in the body and mind. Our bodies naturally produce endocannabinoids which act like natural THC only that they don’t last as long. Anandamide is one of the best-known endocannabinoids and comes from the Sanskrit word for ‘bliss.’
Cannabinoids look for active receptors and act upon them. To simplify matters, imagine that cannabinoids are keys, and the receptors are locks. When you consume CBD compounds (keys), they search for receptors (locks), and when they find one that fits, they combine, and messages get sent to the rest of the body.
One of the reasons why CBD seemingly works so well for patients with conditions such as Crohn’s is because it binds with CB2 receptors which are primarily located in the GI tract. The CBD can provide relief from the pain and inflammation associated with these diseases.
How to Obtain CBD Oil in Wisconsin, and How to Use It
Despite the murky legal status, the good news is that finding CBD oil in Wisconsin isn’t a difficult process. An estimated 350 farmers changed their business to hemp production in the state within months of the law ‘apparently’ being changed. Although hemp farming is potentially profitable, the associated costs with starting a business are high.
As a result, don’t expect to get CBD oil cheaply. In fact, if it is too inexpensive, it is likely that the product is low-grade. It isn’t unusual for a gram of CBD (1,000mg) to cost over $130 in oil form. When purchasing CBD oil, make sure it comes from industrial hemp, and that the firm uses supercritical CO2 extraction if possible.
As for consumption of CBD oil, place your required amount beneath the tongue for 30-60 seconds. CBD oil bottles should come with a handy dropper that normally allows for up to 1ml of oil.
There are differing opinions when it comes to dosage. It depends on your size, general health, and medical condition. For example, a 140-pound individual with medium pain should start with 15mg a day. A 170-pound person with chronic pain may want to begin with 25mg of CBD per day. Keep increasing gradually until you notice the difference. Be patient, because CBD oil isn’t magic and it may take several doses before you realize that it has benefits.
When choosing a retailer in Wisconsin, make sure they are licensed!
Final Thoughts on CBD Oil in Wisconsin
As long as you are realistic about what CBD oil could do, you may be in for a pleasant surprise. Although many people have ditched their medication, we recommend waiting to see if it is CBD alone that is helping you or a combination of factors. Despite the contradicting statements coming from the state government, there is no indication that buying or selling CBD in Wisconsin is illegal, as long as it has less than 0.3% THC and comes from industrial hemp.
Everything you need to know about CBD in Wisconsin including benefits, dosage, and more.