Cannabidiol (CBD) has exploded in popularity across the United States in recent years. This non-intoxicating compound found in cannabis offers many potential health benefits without causing a high. But is CBD oil legal in South Carolina?
The legal status of CBD in South Carolina has been somewhat murky and complex up until recently. However, new laws have helped clarify the regulations surrounding CBD possession and use in the state.
Here’s a detailed look at South Carolina’s current CBD laws, where you can buy CBD products legally, and more.
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Is CBD Legal in South Carolina?
In 2019, South Carolina passed a new law that removed industrial hemp and hemp-derived products like CBD from the state’s list of controlled substances. This effectively legalized CBD oil containing less than 0.3% THC in the state.
So yes, CBD is now legal in South Carolina as long as it’s derived from industrial hemp and contains no more than 0.3% THC. CBD products with higher THC levels remain illegal in the state outside of South Carolina’s limited medical CBD program.
What Does South Carolina’s CBD Law Say?
South Carolina’s laws regarding industrial hemp and CBD were clarified with the passing of House Bill 3449 (South Carolina Hemp Farming Act) in 2019.
This new law legalized the cultivation and possession of industrial hemp, removing it from the state’s list of controlled substances. It defined industrial hemp as any part of the cannabis plant with a THC concentration of 0.3% or less on a dry weight basis.
As a result, CBD oil derived from legally grown industrial hemp containing no more than 0.3% THC also became legal to buy, possess, and use in South Carolina under this new legislation.
However, marijuana-derived CBD products remain illegal in the state unless approved under South Carolina’s limited medical CBD program.
Where Can You Buy CBD in South Carolina?
Now that hemp-derived CBD oil is legal in South Carolina, CBD products are widely available across the state.
Some of the places where you can find CBD for sale include:
- Online CBD retailers that ship to South Carolina addresses
- Local CBD specialty stores and vape shops
- Health stores and organic markets
- Some pharmacies and drug stores
- Convenience stores and gas stations
You can also find CBD-infused products like edibles, topicals, and more in many South Carolina stores and markets. Just remember to check that any CBD products you buy are sourced from legal industrial hemp and contain no more than 0.3% THC.
Reputable manufacturers will provide third-party lab test results to verify the cannabinoid content listed on their product labels. This can help ensure you’re getting a legal CBD product.
Is a Prescription Required for CBD Oil in South Carolina?
No, you do not need a prescription to purchase hemp-derived CBD oil or other CBD products in South Carolina. They can be bought over-the-counter without a medical marijuana card.
This applies to CBD products like tinctures, capsules, edibles and more as long as they are made from legal industrial hemp and contain no more than 0.3% THC. High-THC medical cannabis oils do require a prescription under South Carolina’s medical marijuana program.
Are There Any Restrictions on CBD Possession?
South Carolina’s hemp laws do not place any restrictions on how much legal hemp-derived CBD you can buy or possess at one time. However, CBD oil products must meet the legal definition of industrial hemp based on their THC concentration.
Possession of marijuana-derived CBD oil containing more than 0.3% THC could still face prosecution unless approved for medical use in South Carolina. The possession of recreational marijuana remains illegal in the state.
Can You Travel to South Carolina with CBD?
Yes, you can legally travel to South Carolina with hemp-derived CBD products containing 0.3% THC or less. This applies whether you’re driving or flying within state borders.
However, it’s important to keep a few things in mind:
- Follow TSA guidelines and store CBD in your checked luggage when flying – this avoids any confusion at airport security.
- Have your CBD clearly labeled and in original packaging.
- Keep copies of third-party lab tests confirming the THC content is within legal limits.
- Avoid traveling out of state with CBD as laws vary across the country.
As long as you take these precautions, you shouldn’t have any issues traveling within or to South Carolina with legal CBD products. But it’s wise to research CBD laws at your destination if traveling outside of the state.
Is CBD Legal for Recreational Use?
Yes, CBD products made from industrial hemp are legal for recreational use in South Carolina for anyone over the age of 18. There are currently no restrictions around the recreational use of hemp-derived CBD oil containing less than 0.3% THC.
You do not need a medical marijuana prescription or license to legally buy and use CBD recreationally. This makes CBD readily accessible to most adults in South Carolina looking to try it.
However, the possession and use of marijuana-derived CBD products for recreational purposes remain illegal outside of South Carolina’s medical marijuana program.
Can CBD Be Used as a Food Additive or Drink?
Unfortunately, South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) has banned the use of CBD as a food additive or drink ingredient.
The DHEC states that federal law prohibits adding CBD to any food or beverage product. So cafes and restaurants in South Carolina cannot legally add CBD oil to coffees, smoothies or other menu items at this time.
Hopefully, this food and drink restriction will be lifted in the future as CBD continues to gain mainstream acceptance. But for now, CBD cannot be legally used or sold as an edible or drink in South Carolina.
Is CBD Legal for Medical Use?
In addition to recreational use, CBD is also legal for medical purposes in South Carolina. However, only CBD products that meet certain requirements can be legally used for medical use in the state.
South Carolina has approved a limited medical CBD law known as “Julian’s Law” which allows the medical use of CBD oil with less than 0.9% THC and at least 15% cannabidiol.
To qualify, you must be diagnosed with one of the following severe conditions:
- Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome
- Dravet Syndrome
- Also includes other severe forms of epilepsy that don’t adequately respond to traditional treatments
Additionally, CBD prescriptions can only be written by licensed physicians participating in an FDA-approved investigational new drug study. This makes access fairly limited compared to most states.
Outside of this restrictive program, marijuana-derived CBD products remain illegal in South Carolina for medical use.
Is It Legal to Buy CBD Online in South Carolina?
Yes, you can legally purchase hemp-derived CBD products online from South Carolina retailers or those that ship to the state. This includes CBD oils, edibles, topicals and other products made from industrial hemp.
When buying CBD online in South Carolina, just remember to:
- Confirm the products contain 0.3% THC or less
- Check for lab testing showing cannabinoid content
- Read reviews of the retailer’s products and services
Ordering CBD online can be a convenient way to access a wide variety of hemp-based CBD products while enjoying the protections of South Carolina CBD laws. Reputable CBD companies will also ship for free to SC residents.
Can You Grow Hemp and Make CBD in South Carolina?
With the passing of new industrial hemp legislation in 2019, South Carolina also legalized regulated hemp cultivation and CBD manufacturing in the state.
Those interested in growing industrial hemp or processing it into CBD oil must apply for a license from the South Carolina Department of Agriculture. Licenses must be renewed annually.
In addition to licenses, hemp farmers and CBD producers must adhere to strict security, testing and labeling requirements set by the Department of Agriculture. All plants and final products must contain 0.3% THC or less.
By regulating the hemp industry, South Carolina aims to ensure quality CBD products are produced in the state legally and safely.
Is Smokable Hemp Flower Legal in South Carolina?
While smokable hemp flower containing 0.3% THC or less is technically legal under federal law, South Carolina banned the manufacture, possession and sale of smokable hemp in 2022.
Law enforcement argued that smokable hemp is difficult to distinguish from marijuana and interferes with probable cause searches. So at this time, smoking raw hemp flower could put you at risk of criminal charges in South Carolina.
However, other non-smokable hemp products like CBD oil, edibles and topicals remain legal in the state. The legality of smokable hemp may be reconsidered in the future pending new legislation.
Will South Carolina Legalize Marijuana Soon?
Currently, recreational marijuana remains illegal in South Carolina. Possession of even small amounts can lead to criminal penalties. However, public support for adult-use marijuana legalization has grown rapidly in recent years.
According to 2021 polling, 65% of South Carolina residents now support legalizing cannabis – a significant increase from just a few years ago. Several bills to legalize and regulate cannabis have also been introduced, though none have yet passed.
It will likely take more time to sway traditionally conservative lawmakers in South Carolina around full legalization. But with neighboring states like North Carolina progressing with medical and recreational laws, pressure is mounting for cannabis reform.
While South Carolina isn’t quite ready to legalize just yet, changing attitudes suggest it could potentially happen within the next 5 years.
Is CBD Legal in South Carolina? The Bottom Line
In summary, hemp-derived CBD products containing less than 0.3% THC are now legal in South Carolina for both recreational and medical use. Marijuana-derived CBD remains illegal outside of an extremely limited medical CBD program.
Consumers over 18 can buy CBD online or in stores across South Carolina without a prescription. However, CBD cannot currently be added to foods or drinks in the state.
While smokable hemp flower and recreational cannabis aren’t permitted at this time, South Carolina has made good progress in embracing CBD. As public support for cannabis continues to grow, additional policy changes may come in the future.
Just remember to always check your CBD products for lab tests and purchase from reputable companies to ensure you’re following South Carolina CBD laws. This will allow you to experience the benefits of CBD safely and legally.
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