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CBD Oil: Industrial Hemp vs Medical Cannabis

CBD Oil: CBD from Industrial Hemp vs CBD from Medical Cannabis

Most of the visitors to our dispensaries have seen CBD and other products for sale at retail establishments like smoke shops and health food stores. In this article, we’ll explain the difference between these products and the full-spectrum CBD products carried at MOCA, including CBD oil.

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What is CBD and What are the Benefits?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in the Cannabis Sativa plant. CBD can be found in both industrial hemp plants as well as the marijuana plants grown by the legalized cannabis industry.

CBD is used to control seizures for those with epilepsy and neuropathic pain for patients living with multiple sclerosis. It’s a powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory often used by those with living with chronic pain or Crohn’s disease.

It also has anti-anxiety effects that may even counter the paranoia that is sometimes produced by tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the compound responsible for the psychoactive effects of marijuana.

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What are the Differences in Laws that Regulate Hemp-Derived CBD and Cannabis-Derived CBD?

The industrial hemp plant and the marijuana plant are two different subspecies of the plant Cannabis Sativa. Industrial hemp plants, which legally must have 0.3 percent or less of THC by weight, are fibrous, bamboo-like and intended for making rope and clothing. Marijuana plants have been crossbred over time to create sticky, resinous buds that can contain around 20% THC by weight.

The laws that govern these two plants haven’t moved in tandem; they’ve developed completely separately. This excellent Chicago Reader article details the shaky patchwork of regulations that allow the sale of industrial hemp CBD in Chicago-area shops.

On the other hand, the sale of medical-cannabis-derived CBD and all other medical cannabis products are regulated by the State of Illinois Medical Cannabis Pilot Program. The CBD molecule, when isolated, is chemically identical no matter where it came from. What differs is the quality of the products, the way they’re sold and regulated and what other cannabinoids may be present in the products. CBD oil and other concentrates are just some of the ways to ingest regulated, medical-grade, cannabis-plant-derived CBD.

Since CBD products derived from industrial hemp are not regulated, there is almost no way to know if the claims printed on the packaging are true. Only a small portion of producers of CBD from industrial hemp have paid for third-party independent lab analysis to verify the purity and concentration of their products. Many others simply sell glycerin or carrier oil with only trace amounts of CBD.

In comparison, the Illinois Department of Agriculture demands that each batch of medical cannabis be tested in an approved laboratory to ensure it is free of microbiological contaminants, mycotoxins, pesticides, or residual solvents. In addition, a detailed lab report on percentage-by-weight of THC, CBD and other active ingredients is provided to the end consumer.

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Why is CBD from Dispensaries More Effective?

Many CBD products developed for sale in medical and recreational dispensaries are whole plant extracts, meaning they contain a full spectrum of beneficial cannabinoids. These products bring greater relief than products that contain only isolated CBD through a process known as the entourage effect.

CBD products intended for medical use may also contain varying levels of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), a psychoactive chemical compound that produces feelings of euphoria, creativity and relaxation. They may also contain small amounts of other cannabinoids like CBG, CBDA and CBN.

Where Can I Buy Full-Spectrum CBD?

To purchase CBD products derived from medical and adult-use cannabis, place an order for pickup at MOCA – Modern Cannabis in Logan Square and River North. MOCA does not sell any hemp-derived CBD products.