CBD In South Carolina
2021 Complete Guide
Is CBD in South Carolina Legal? | SC CBD 2021
South Carolina CBD laws have been changing extremely quickly in South Carolina in recent years. So, what is the current legal status of CBD oil and hemp in the state? Is CBD oil legal in South Carolina in 2021? In this post we’ll discuss not only the legality of possessing CBD oil in the state, but also of growing hemp, producing CBD oil, and selling CBD oil and other CBD-infused products. Let’s roll.
A brief history of South Carolina hemp and CBD laws
Did you know that the cultivation of hemp, the type of cannabis used to make CBD oil, dates back to 1733 in South Carolina? An act was passed in the then British colony to promote the growth of hemp for its “useful manufacture to his Majesty’s Royal Navy.” At the time hemp was the main crop used to produce fibers for rope and cloth.
Everything seemed to be going along just fine for more than 200 years when in 1937 the US federal government declared the cultivation of cannabis to be illegal in the US. The prohibition effort was spearheaded by influential politicians with ties to the lumber industry. These buzz killers saw an opportunity to crush their competition by lumping hemp together with marijuana. Both lumber and hemp were being used to make products such as paper and building materials.
It would be another eight decades before South Carolina lawmakers would get around to ending the prohibition of hemp. The legislation was drafted to take advantage of a farm bill signed by President Obama in 2014 that permitted states to develop hemp pilot programs. The new legislation, not passed until 2017, called for the licensing of up to 20 hemp farmers to grow up to 20 acres each. Those limits were increased in 2018 to 50 hemp grower licenses with 50 acres each.
However, the question remained as to whether or not CBD oil was legal in South Carolina because it was still, technically, illegal at the federal level. But there was one segment of the citizenry that was permitted to possess CBD oil.
A few years earlier, in 2014, Senate Bill 1035, aka “Julian’s Law,” was passed. The law permitted the use of CBD oil to treat children with severe epilepsy as long as the treatment was recommended by a physician. The measure also officially reclassified any cannabis product possessing less than 0.3 percent THC as industrial hemp. It’s about this time some that retailers in the state first began selling CBD oil.
Then in March 2019, South Carolina’s Hemp Farming Act was passed. The measure repealed the cap on the number of hemp grower licenses in South Carolina. Since the law was signed, the state has seen a 565 percent increase in the number of hemp farmers in the state. In 2021, more than 100 South Carolina farmers are licensed to grow hemp.
Controversy over cured, smokable hemp flower
Although the Hemp Farming Act was lauded by stakeholders in the hemp industry, there was one problem for consumers. Within the bill was language meant to prevent unlicensed parties from possessing raw hemp. The state Attorney General’s Office interpreted the law to mean that it was illegal to sell cured smokable hemp. The opinion states “the statute makes it clear that the mere possession of raw unprocessed hemp or hemp not in a finished hemp product without a license is unlawful.”
However, the notion that cured and trimmed CBD-rich hemp flower counts as “unprocessed hemp” is being challenged.
The law was implemented to remove obstacles for state law enforcement officials in enforcing marijuana laws. Smokable CBD-rich hemp flower looks and smells exactly like marijuana. Although drug labs in the state had the capability to test for the presence of THC, they were not designed to test for the actual percentage of the buzz-causing compound.
Although South Carolina’s licensed hemp farmers are arguably only permitted to sell dried flowers to processors and not directly to retailers, they are allowed to sell the product in other states. And although it’s easy for retailers to purchase cured hemp flower from other states, selling the product in-state puts them at risk of being raided.
So, that’s the background that led us up to 2021. So, is CBD legal in South Carolina now? What about other CBD products? Can South Carolina legally buy CBD online? Furthermore, can anyone grow hemp or sell CBD? Let’s go over some of these frequently asked questions.
South Carolina Hemp CBD Oil FAQ | 2021
Is CBD oil legal in South Carolina?
The answer is yes, CBD oil is legal in South Carolina in 2021. Along with CBD oil, most other CBD infused products such as CBD tinctures, capsules, creams, and so forth are also legal (see list of CBD products below).
The one exception, as we mentioned above is smokable hemp flower. Although this is still being debated, stores across the state have been pulling smokable hemp off their shelves for fear of being raided.
Although smokable hemp can still be purchased online, it’s inadvisable to smoke hemp in public as it smells just like a weed and is likely to get you arrested.
Furthermore, any products produced from marijuana, or any products produced from hemp that have more than 0.3 percent CBD are illegal in the state. If you’re caught with such products you can be subject to the penalties of the state’s marijuana laws.
Can doctors prescribe CBD oil in South Carolina?
Only one CBD-based drug has been approved by the FDA. The drug, known as Epidiolex can be prescribed to children suffering from epilepsy. Doctors are also permitted to recommend the use of CBD oil by patients suffering from seizure disorders. However, since the hemp laws have been updated that recommendation is no longer required to purchase CBD oil.
Doctors can also recommend CBD oil to any of their patients, however, keep in mind that insurance companies are not required to cover the cost of CBD oil or any other herbal treatment, for that matter.
What medical conditions are being treated with CBD oil in South Carolina?
Although Epidiolex, which is essentially purified CBD, is being used to treat epilepsy and other seizure disorders in the state, studies are underway to determine the safety and efficacy of CBD in treating dozens of medical conditions. So far the results have been quite promising.
The most common conditions reported by those who use CBD oil are anxiety, depression, stress, sleep disorders such as insomnia, and chronic pain.
Here’s a list of some of the many medical conditions being treated with hemp CBD oil in South Carolina.
Can I legally purchase CBD online in South Carolina?
Yes, you are permitted to purchase CBD products online in South Carolina. That includes smokable hemp. However, as we have warned, don’t use it in public until the matter of its legality has been settled once and for all.
What CBD products are legal in South Carolina?
Again, as mentioned earlier, the only product that is currently on the naughty list is smokable hemp. And even that is being debated at the time of writing.
Here are just some of the CBD products that are legal in South Carolina:
- CBD Oil
- CBD Tincture
- CBD Capsules
- CBD Tablets
- CBD Lozenges
- CBD Candy
- CBD Edibles
- CBD Beverages
- CBD Coffee
- CBD Tea
- CBD Water
- CBD Ointments
- CBD Salves
- CBD Balms
- CBD Creams
- CBD Lotions
- CBD Sex Lube
- CBD Vape Pens
- CBD Vape Oil
- CBD Vape Additive
- CBD Vape Cartridges
- CBD Dabs
- CBD Concentrates
- CBD Isolate
- CBD Flower
- CBD Full Spectrum
- CBD Organic
Where can I purchase CBD oil legally in South Carolina
Because CBD oil is neither a prescription drug not an over-the-counter drug it can be sold by anyone. There are thousands of retailers in the state that offer CBD oil and other CBD products. Most of these are located in the larger cities in the state such as Charlotte, Raleigh, Greensboro, Durham, Winston-Salem, Fayetteville, Cary, Wilmington, High Point, Greenville, and Asheville. However, these days you can find CBD at many smoke shops, convenience stores, health food stores, and even some drug stores even in rural areas.
Can I legally grow my own hemp in South Carolina?
Only state-licensed farmers and processors are permitted to grow and process hemp. Applications for 2021 permits for growing, processing, and handling hemp were made available starting in February of 2020. There will be no limits to the number of grower permits and no limit on acreage.
The state has not yet established licensing fees for the 2021 season. In 2019 the cost was only $50 to apply for a permit and it cost $500 for a one year license.
See the links at the end of the article for more information on growing and processing hemp in South Carolina.
Can I legally sell CBD oil in South Carolina?
Again, the answer is yes as long as you’re not selling smokable hemp.
That being said, if you’re running a shop and not just direct selling it’s a good idea to discuss your decision to sell CBD products with a qualified and experienced attorney who is well versed in South Carolina’s hemp and CBD laws.
Here are some helpful links to learn more about hemp CBD oil
Learn more about hemp CBD laws in South Carolina
- SCDA Sets Out Timeline for 2020 Hemp Permitting
- Hemp Farming Program Timeline 2019/2020
- Placeholder State Hemp Plan Letter
- Interim Rule Summary
- Hemp FAQ
- Download the Hemp Processor Application Here (.pdf)
- Hemp Program
- The Hemp Farming Act
- SC Hemp Farmer’s Association
- Clemson – South Carolina Industrial Hemp Program
- SC Post & Courier – SC hemp farmer arrested by SLED wins initial victory in court allowing him to sell crop
- WYFF – Smokable hemp pulled from shelves across South Carolina
- Hemp Industry Daily – South Carolina Hemp Business & Legal News
- WSOC – South Carolina CBD stores left confused amid raids, new opinion
- Charleston City Paper – Hemp is growing fast in South Carolina, but can the industry keep up?