Recently, the United States Postal Service (USPS) published a notice on the correct way to mail cannabidiol (CBD) oil and CBD products. This wasn’t a forward-thinking measure, but rather the result of six months of bureaucratic soul-searching following a federal court ruling to allow such shipments.
It also shouldn’t have been necessary. The 2014 Farm Bill gave clear guidance on the issue of CBD crossing state lines. But seizures of hemp and hemp products have continued in the years since, despite the federal government’s efforts to set up a regulatory system that would protect manufacturers and transport companies.
Before the 2014 Farm Bill, mailing CBD (along with its production, transfer, and possession) was federally illegal. That was why the 2014 legislation created an exception to the Controlled Substances Act for “industrial hemp” — cannabis plants with a concentration of less than 0.3 percent delta-9 THC, grown in compliance with pilot programs also designed by the Farm Bill.
In 2016 and every year thereafter, Congress approved funding riders to the Consolidated Appropriations Act that protected the shipment of industrial hemp. These riders specifically prohibited the federal government from using any funds “to prohibit the transportation, processing, sale or use of industrial hemp that is grown or cultivated in accordance with the [Farm Bill], within or outside the State in which the industrial hemp is grown or cultivated.”