Purchase and possession of CBD oil products are illegal in Iowa. State law classifies cannabidiol as a controlled substance. Learn more. You can find CBD at nearly any market in the Hawkeye State, but is CBD legal in Iowa? Although CBD is increasingly popular for managing conditions like stress and poor sleep, fewer people are certain about CBD’s legal status. Since CBD laws vary from state to state, it can get pretty confusing. Fortunately, Iowa update
Is CBD Oil Legal in Iowa? – August 2022
Iowa state law still classifies CBD under Schedule I controlled substances (4) . Thus, such products are illegal until the federal government approves Iowa ’s hemp plan.
Attorney General Thomas Miller issued the statement on hemp plants and CBD products in May 2020, clarifying to the public that CBD is illegal under Iowa law (5) .
Historically, the 1970 Federal Controlled Substances Act defined Schedule I drugs as substances with high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use (6) .
The law included hemp, marijuana, and other cannabis plant varieties.
The 2018 Farm Bill redefined industrial hemp to remove it from the category and allowed its growth, cultivation, and manufacture (7) .
The revised definition of hemp made hemp-derived CBD products legal under federal laws , as long as the products contained less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol ( THC ) on a dry weight basis (8) .
The Farm Bill also tasked the United States Food and Drug Administration ( FDA ) with regulating the labeling of CBD products .
Although such federal laws exist, the legality of using hemp products in Iowa remains limited to qualified citizens.
Iowa CBD Laws
The Iowa legislature passed Senate File (SF) 2360 or the Iowa Medical Cannabidiol Act in 2014 (9) .
The law allowed Iowans with intractable epilepsy to use CBD products with a THC content of less than 0.3%.
Although the act existed, residents had no way to purchase CBD products within the state of Iowa .
House File 524
Former Gov. Terry Branstad signed HF 524 or a revised version of the Iowa Medical Cannabidiol Act in 2017 to authorize the use of medical cannabis (10) .
This law assigned the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) with developing a framework to regulate the manufacture and sale of CBD.
The law also granted the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) the authority to issue a medical cannabidiol registration card to qualified patients.
Patients with a medical cannabidiol registration card may purchase CBD products legally from licensed dispensaries in Iowa.
Iowa Hemp Act (SF 599)
Gov. Kim Reynolds signed Senate File (SF) 599 or the Iowa Hemp Act in May 2019 (11) .
Through this law, the current governor assigned the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) to draft an industrial hemp program.
By approving the draft, the United States Department of Agriculture ( USDA ) granted the IDALS the power to oversee hemp and CBD product regulation within the state.
House File 2589
Later on, lawmakers signed more amendments to Iowa ’s Medical Cannabidiol Program through HF 2589 (12) .
Gov. Kim Reynolds signed the law on June 29, 2020, which took effect on July 1, 2020.
This law removed the 0.3% THC limit on products and replaced it with a 4.50g THC purchase limit per 90 days.
The only exceptions to this amendment were terminally ill patients and those with healthcare practitioner s that certified them for additional THC use upon joining the program.
Other modifications included the addition of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to the conditions.
This law also redefined the scope of medical conditions that CBD was used for , from “untreatable pain” to “ chronic pain .”
HF 2589 also shifted the responsibility of issuing registration cards to the IDPH instead of the DOT.
Farmers and growers can apply for an Iowa hemp license to grow and cultivate hemp plants within the state through the IDALS Hemp Law (13) .
It is important to note that this commercial hemp production program does not legalize CBD consumption.
All individuals associated with the hemp industry must submit their fingerprints upon applying for a hemp license.
Associated individuals include:
- Those with at least 5% or more legal or equitable interest in hemp crops
- Those applying as a member of a business entity
- Key participants in an executive corporate entity
- An applicant appointed by the president or chancellor of an institution governed by the state board of regents
- An individual acting as the authorized representative for the hemp licensee
The IDALS also collect s license application fees once an individual submits their hemp license application.
|Acres||License Fee||Base Inspection Fee|
|0 to 5||$500 plus $5 per acre||$1,000|
|5.1 to 10||$750 plus $5 per acre||$1,000|
|10.1 to 40||$1,000 plus $5 per acre||$1,000|
More information on the application process is available at the Iowa Department of Agriculture website .
At the state level, laboratories must establish independent test methods and implement standard operating procedures for testing CBD products for cannabinoids , microbials, residual solvents, heavy metals, and pesticides (14) .
Based on Iowa ’s Hemp Law, apart from standard nonrefundable sampling fees, a hemp licensee must provide a pre-harvest notification to the IDALS through a published form at least 30 days before harvesting (15) .
Upon receipt of the pre-harvest notice, the IDALS schedule a sampling appointment with the licensee.
The licensee or an authorized representative then accompan ies the IDALS inspector at the crop site to produce official samples. The inspector collect s samples based on the following table (16) :
|Number of Acres||Number of Plants Sampled||Number of Acres||Number of Plants Sampled||Number of Acres||Number of Plants Sampled||Number of Acres||Number of Plants Sampled|
*If necessary for obtaining adequate samples, the IDALS inspector may take more than the minimum cuttings listed in the table.
More information on official hemp harvest sampling, testing, and timing is available at the Iowa Department of Agriculture website .
Buying CBD Legally
MedPharm Iowa is the only licensed CBD manufacturer within the state, per the Iowa Medical Cannabidiol Program (17) .
How to Choose Which CBD Products to Buy
When choosing the best CBD products to buy in Iowa , customers should consider if the shops they plan to purchase from are accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB). BBB gathers consumer reports and reviews on various businesses and only accredits credible entities (18) .
As of November 2020, only two CBD oil stores in Iowa are listed on the BBB site, both of which are not accredited by the BB B (19) :
- 50 Shades of Green
Council Bluffs, IA
Phone: (712) 326-1850
- Your CBD Store
Phone: (563) 676-1122
CBD oil comes in various forms. Standard CBD products include oil tinctures , CBD gummies , pills or capsules, topicals , and vape products.
The acceptable forms of medical CBD in Iowa are any of the following (20) :
- Oral forms – tablets, capsules, liquids, tinctures , and sublingual forms
- Topical forms – gels, ointments, creams, lotions , and transdermal patches
- Nebulized inhaled forms
- Suppositories – rectal and vaginal
Hemp quality is an important factor to consider in choosing CBD products since most of them are hemp-derived.
Individuals purchasing CBD products from licensed distributors in Iowa must look for the certificate of analysis (COA).
The COA is a document that third-party labs issue a CBD company to ensure that its products meet quality standards.
A COA contains a CBD product ’s cannabinoid profile and test results to see if they contain pesticides, bacteria, heavy metals, and residual solvents.
Where to Buy CBD Products Legally
Registered patients or their proxies may purchase CBD products in person from one of three licensed dispensaries in the s tate:
- Sioux City, IA
- Windsor Heights, IA
Iowa Cannabis Company
These dispensaries have lists of products on their websites. Registered patients may contact the nearest location to schedule appointments for making purchases.
How to Read CBD Labels and Packaging
Medical CBD products in Iowa must meet the state’s extensive labeling requirements (21) .
Per Iowa state regulations, CBD product labels must list the following details:
- Manufacturer’s name and address
- Primary active ingredients
- Directions for use
- The recommended amount and the maximum amount by age and weight
- Expiration date
- Storage instructions
Customers should seek CBD brands that comply with these labeling requirements to ensure that they are purchasing from a reliable source.
Some CBD brands include scannable QR codes on their products so customers can compare the labels with actual lab results.
What Is CBD?
CBD is short for cannabidiol, a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in Cannabis sativa plants, particularly hemp.
The three types of CBD are full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and CBD isolates.
Full-spectrum CBD contains all terpenes, flavonoids, fatty acids, and naturally occurring cannabinoids within the hemp plant .
Broad-spectrum CBD contains almost the same components as full-spectrum CBD, except THC .
Meanwhile, CBD isolates only contain cannabidiol after chemically separating the other components of the hemp plant .
What Is the Difference Between Hemp- and Marijuana-Derived CBD?
Both hemp and marijuana plants contain CBD.
CBD is more abundant in hemp plants , while THC is more abundant in marijuana plants.
Hemp-derived CBD has less than 0.3 % THC on a dry weight basis and is federally legal.
Marijuana-derived CBD contain s more than that THC amount, making such products illegal.
What Are the Benefits of CBD Oil?
Several studies have looked at the purported benefits of CBD oil .
Researchers observed that CBD has potential therapeutic benefits for Parkinson’s disease (22) , Crohn ’s disease (23) , and multiple sclerosis (24) .
Still, the US FDA has only one approved CBD treatment for epilepsy called Epidiolex (25) .
Does CBD Oil Have Side Effects?
CBD has a good safety profile , according to the World Health Organization (26) . However, it may have potential adverse effects, including the following (27) :
- Liver damage
- Loss of appetite and gastrointestinal problems
- Mood changes
- Potential drug interactions
- Changes in alertness
- Dry mouth
Why Is CBD Oil Legal in the Other States?
The 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp cultivation at the federal level. This law redefined hemp as cannabis with less than 0.3% THC content .
Individual states have their interpretation of this law while adhering to FDA standards.
Retailers cannot market CBD as medication or dietary supplements , per FDA regulation.
Misdemeanors and failure to comply with federal law enforcement may result in corresponding fines.
Although the Farm Bill of 2018 legalized the cultivation of hemp in all 50 states at the federal level, CBD is still illegal in Iowa .
Iowans may only purchase medical CBD from licensed dispensaries within the state.
*The information shared in this article was based on findings retrieved on November 11, 2020. The legality and regulations for CBD may change without notice .
Is CBD Legal in Iowa?
You can find CBD at nearly any market in the Hawkeye State, but is CBD legal in Iowa?
Although CBD is increasingly popular for managing conditions like stress and poor sleep, fewer people are certain about CBD’s legal status. Since CBD laws vary from state to state, it can get pretty confusing.
Fortunately, Iowa updated their legislation in 2020 to clarify what kinds of CBD products can be legally sold and consumed in the state.
Now, you no longer need a medical CBD card to access legally-produced CBD in the state, but you do need to understand Iowa CBD laws:
Disclaimer: We’re always working to stay informed on the latest CBD laws and research. However, state laws are subject to change and we advise that you do your own research to verify the information you find in this article. This is not intended as legal advice.
- CBD products were only accessible to qualifying medical patients until 2020. Now, some products may still be prohibited, but legally-produced CBD products are generally accessible.
- The state also has no minimum age requirements, but it may not be easy to access CBD in stores for consumers who are under 21.
- Doctors in Iowa may recommend CBD, but you don’t need a prescription to access it.
- CBD may be accessible at a variety of locations in Indiana, but the state does very little to regulate quality. Certain practices, like buying CBD online and properly vetting your CBD brand, may reduce the risks of buying low-quality formulas.
Legal Concerns About CBD
It’s true that CBD gained its federal legal status in 2018. The Hemp Farming Act effectively removed industrial hemp and its natural derivatives (like cannabinoids) from the Controlled Substances Act.
But there’s a catch, and it complicates things:
Legal CBD products must come from industrial hemp.
This classification is designated to hemp material that meets a strict set of standards. The most significant is that it contains less than 0.3% THC on a dry weight basis. If CBD products are made from any cannabis strain that contains more than 0.3% THC, it is not a federally legal product.
The final product must contain less than 0.3% THC, too.
That means that even if a brand starts with legal hemp material, they need to carry out careful manufacturing procedures to produce a legal end product. It’s possible for certain cannabinoids to be “concentrated” during the extraction process, leading to higher THC concentrations than in the original material. Proper manufacturing and careful testing need to be employed to avoid this issue.
Because there is very little regulation in the CBD industry, it’s important to evaluate a brand carefully before you buy. It can be hard to tell if a CBD product is made from a legal hemp source and meets the federal guidelines for legal hemp products. The best way to ensure that your CBD products are legal is by checking the third-party lab tests for cannabinoid potency.
Of course, these regulations only apply on a federal scale. You must also ensure that your products meet the standards laid out by federal guidelines and those set by your state.
What are the CBD laws in Iowa?
Iowa passed the Medical Cannabidiol Act in 2014, a bill that gave qualifying medical patients the right to use CBD products with less than 0.3% THC by weight. The bill had multiple limitations, especially that it declared no legal forms of access for CBD users. In 2017, Governor Terry Branstad updated the law with House File 524. This file expanded the list of qualifying conditions and provided insight into hemp manufacturing and sales, although both remain pretty restricted throughout the state.
Iowa is one of the few states that did not immediately update legislation to match the federal definition of hemp and hemp-derived products. Unlike states like Colorado and Illinois that got a head start on approval for their hemp programs, Iowa was late to act.
The Iowa Hemp Act, signed in 2019, finally gave the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship provisions for designing framework for a state hemp program to submit to the USDA for approval. At the time, the bill did not clearly define CBD’s legality within the state.
On June 17, 2020, Governor Kim Reynolds submitted House File 2581, a bill that further refined these laws by defining hemp as an agricultural commodity that can be manufactured, sold, and consumed. Further, it declares that CBD products from out of state are also legal in Iowa, providing they come from a state with a USDA-approved hemp program.
The file also clarifies that hemp products cannot legally be sold or used for inhalation, like hemp cigarettes or vaporizers. The use or sale of CBD in this manner is considered a misdemeanor in the state of Iowa. Similar laws have been adopted in a few other states, like Georgia, Texas, and South Dakota.
Is full spectrum CBD legal in Iowa?
It’s easy to assume that CBD isolate is legal in many places since it contains no THC, but many consumers are worried that the trace amounts of THC found in full-spectrum CBD products may cause trouble in states where cannabis is illegal. Luckily, Iowa has no laws restricting full spectrum CBD products that contain 0.3% THC or less, so long as they are grown under a USDA-approved hemp program.
Does Iowa have a CBD possession limit?
To date, there are no possession limits for CBD products that meet legal guidelines. CBD products that contain over 0.3% THC may be classified as cannabis products, which are illegal in Iowa for general use. They do prohibit the use of smokable forms of CBD, like CBD cigarettes or vaporizers. Possession of these forms of CBD could result in a misdemeanor.
Can doctors prescribe CBD in Iowa?
In Iowa, you do not need a prescription to access CBD products, but the sate does have a medical cannabidiol program that allows qualifying patients to access cannabis-derived CBD. In general, doctors typically do not “prescribe” CBD products that are sold over the counter, rather they may “recommend” them. You do need a prescription to access CBD-based pharmaceuticals.
Only one CBD product has been approved by the FDA to date. This product, GW Pharmaceuticals’ Epidiolex, is designed to treat rare forms of childhood epilepsy. Aside from this product (which comes with stringent usage guidelines), many doctors are still learning about the benefits CBD. If you’re interested in the benefits of CBD, you may need to spark a conversation with your doctor.
Where to buy CBD in Iowa?
Iowa’s 2020 CBD laws expand access to hemp products, and you’ll likely find CBD products in convenience stores, grocery markets, and other health stores throughout the state. Still, the state does very little to ensure quality, aside from imposing regulations that are mostly focused on the product’s THC content.
This lack of regulation can be risky.
Buying CBD online is a suitable option for most consumers. When you buy CBD online directly from the brand, you get better oversight of the brand’s manufacturing practices. Looking at the brand’s hemp source and lab testing procedures can help ensure that the CBD products you choose are clean, potent, and meet legal guidelines.
Buying CBD directly from a brand instead of from a third-party market may also be less costly since you won’t have to pay the extra fees that are often tacked on by the middle man. Of course, premium CBD can be expensive to manufacture, so you should also be wary of products that offer low-ball prices.
Finally, buying CBD online may be the best way to access many different types of CBD. The most common type of CBD product is an oil tincture, but you can find a variety of CBD edibles, topicals, and other specialty products when you shop online.
For more information on how to find high-quality CBD products, check out our CBD Buyer’s Guide.
What’s the legal age to buy CBD in Iowa?
The legal age to buy CBD is fuzzy, even when looking at federal regulations. In theory, CBD should be accessible to people of all ages, especially since it gained its popularity as a treatment for various childhood illnesses. Of course, some products may not be suitable for people of all ages, like smokable hemp flower or CBD vaporizers.
In Iowa, there are no statewide regulations regarding the legal age to buy CBD. Instead, these laws may vary by jurisdiction and are more heavily impacted by CBD vendors. Since the legal age for tobacco products has been raised to 21, many smoke shops may require users to be 21 to purchase CBD.
Many CBD brands allow customers who are 18 or older to order online and will ship legal CBD products to Iowa.
Is CBD legal in all 50 states?
Thanks to federal updates, CBD has the potential to be legal in every U.S. state. CBD is legal in Iowa, but every state has different regulations regarding the manufacture and sale of CBD. Click here to find out where CBD is legal.