CBD or otherwise known as cannabidiol is a Phyto cannabinoid (chemical compound derived from plants), was discovered by chemist Dr. Roger Adams at the University of Illinois in 1940. There are over 113 cannabinoid compounds found in cannabis plants and Adams used an ethanol extraction process that resulted in a “red oil” (1); however, the title of “Father of Modern Cannabis” lies with Raphael Mechoulam who identified the completely different structures of CBD and THC in 1964. Not only did his discovery lead to THC being the compound responsible for the “high” during decarboxylation, it led to his discovery, in association with William Devane and Dr. Lumir Hanus, of the endocannabinoid system within our bodies (2)!
Regulations began on cannabis in 1906 when the Pure Food and Drug Act passed requiring warning labels on certain drugs (3). As the years went on new legislations passed making the recreational, medical, and industrial use of cannabis harder to obtain and use due to propaganda stating cannabis’ nature as a “habit-forming” and “dangerous” drug (4). In 1937 the Marihuana Tax Act made the possession or transfer of cannabis illegal except for medical and industrial uses by implementing an excise tax on all sales. Finally, after many years of protesting the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 the Supreme Court ruled the Marijuana Tax Act to be unconstitutional, unfortunately this was not a change for the better as Congress passed the Controlled Substances Act officially prohibiting the use of cannabis for any purpose and becoming a Schedule I drug.
Despite there being evidence that cannabis, as a drug, held no severe adverse side effects that outweighed the enormous good it did for people medically, and not reaching a level of severity the way alcohol does, cannabis has always been the poster child of the Drug War.
In December of 2018 the Hemp Farming Act of 2018 passed ending hemp prohibition including “extracts, cannabinoids, and derivatives” thus removing it from the Controlled Substance Act (6). Now the only question that remains is, what does this mean for the CBD industry and for consumers like yourselves?