Can You Buy CBD From a Dispensary Without a Card?
Can you buy CBD from a dispensary without a card? The answer to this question varies by state, but there are a few common scenarios we can refer to. Ultimately, it boils down to your age and whether or not your state has a recreational cannabis program in place.
Do You Need a Medical Marijuana Card to Buy CBD Oil?
Recreational states are the easiest places to access CBD from a dispensary. In Arizona, for example, where recreational marijuana is legal, any adult 21 and above can enter dispensaries and buy AZ CBD oil, CBD supplements, full-spectrum CBD, and marijuana products without a medical marijuana card. All you need is a government-issued photo ID as proof of your age.
Of course, if you want to purchase more than one ounce of cannabis flower, stronger products, or cannabis-derived CBD products without paying the excise tax (and you have an Arizona qualifying condition), telemedicine medical marijuana evaluations with a medical provider are the easiest way to get certified.
In states that have legalized medical marijuana, you'll need a card to enter a medical dispensary and buy CBD oil. However, even if you don't qualify for a card, you can usually buy hemp-derived CBD oil at other kinds of stores, such as:
Organic and health food stores
As long as the CBD oil is derived from hemp and contains less than 0.3% THC, it's legal to purchase and possess in most U.S. states (in North Dakota and Minnesota, you’ll still need an MMJ card as of 2022, even if the CBD is hemp-derived). Also, you may still need ID to show that you are at least 18 or at least 21 in certain states.
States That Ban Both Medical and Recreational Marijuana
As of September 2022, there are still 13 states without either a medical or recreational marijuana program, in which the possession of marijuana products is a crime. However, because hemp and hemp-derived CBD products were made federally legal with the 2018 Agricultural Improvement Act (also known as the Farm Bill), adults can still purchase and possess CBD oil in most of these states.
Initially, selected states decided not to recognize the change in federal law and continued to ban the sale and possession of hemp-derived CBD oil. Even now, CBD legalization varies widely by state, with Kansas, Wyoming, South Carolina, and Idaho banning CBD oils with any amount of THC.
Whether your state allows hemp-derived CBD oil with up to 0.3% THC or no THC at all, the good news is that you should be able to obtain or at least possess CBD in some form in most states. If you don’t have a medical card, you'll just need to buy it online or at a pharmacy, health-food store, or supermarket.
Marijuana-Derived CBD Oil
This is where things get a little more complicated. By definition, marijuana is a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act, which means it has no known medical applications and a high potential for abuse. Products derived from a "marijuana" cannabis plant (marijuana denotes cannabis plants with more than 0.3% THC content by dry weight) are federally illegal.
If you live in a legal state, you should be able to buy marijuana-derived CBD oil at a recreational or medical dispensary. In medical-only states, you'll need an MMJ card to purchase marijuana-derived CBD. In recreational states, you'll just need to bring your ID. In either case, marijuana-derived CBD oils aren't sold in neighborhood pharmacies like hemp-derived CBD oil. A dispensary license is required to sell marijuana products—including marijuana-derived CBD oil.
How to Know You're Buying Quality CBD Products
One of the advantages of buying CBD oil at a dispensary is that you have more assurance of quality. When you buy CBD oil from other sources, however, there are still a few ways to check the quality and strength of the product:
Read the label carefully. Note the total CBD and THC content. See if there are any other ingredients or additives.
Divide the total CBD and THC content of the oil by the number of milliliters in the bottle. Multiply the content per milliliter by the serving size to find the CBD and THC content per dose.
Ask for a certificate of analysis that confirms the values displayed on the bottle.
Look at independent, third-party reviews.
Buy only from reputable brands.
While many states require lab testing of products sold in dispensaries, not all do. Whether you buy CBD oil from a dispensary, pharmacy, organic food store, or Walmart, ask to see the certificate of analysis.
Wherever You Live, There's Usually a Way to Purchase CBD Oil
Whether you live in a recreational state like Arizona or in a state like Kansas where all cannabis is banned, there are usually ways (like shopping online or in nutrition stores) to legally access CBD oil.
It has never been easier to find CBD. Before purchasing, just remember to look for lab results and positive reviews, and check whether the product is legal in your state. Quality is key!