Is CBD legal in Wisconsin?

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The Legal Landscape of CBD in Wisconsin

Understanding the legal status of Cannabidiol (CBD) in Wisconsin requires navigating a complex landscape of federal and state laws. These laws have evolved significantly over the past decade, influenced by shifts in both public opinion and scientific understanding of the cannabis plant and its derivatives.

Federal Law and CBD

At the federal level, the legality of CBD hinges on its source. The 2018 Farm Bill legalized the production of hemp — a variety of the cannabis plant with a THC concentration of 0.3% or less — and removed it from the list of controlled substances. As a result, CBD derived from hemp is legal under federal law, provided it meets certain regulations.

Food and Drug Administration Regulations

However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also plays a role in regulating CBD products. The FDA has not approved CBD as a dietary supplement or food additive, making it illegal to sell food or drinks containing CBD across state lines. The FDA has only approved one CBD product, a prescription drug for treating certain types of epilepsy.

Wisconsin State Law and CBD

Wisconsin's laws regarding CBD are somewhat more complicated. The state has not fully aligned with federal law, creating some confusion for consumers and businesses alike.

Wisconsin's Hemp Pilot Program

In 2017, Wisconsin launched a Hemp Pilot Program, allowing farmers to grow industrial hemp with a THC concentration of 0.3% or less. Under this program, CBD derived from industrial hemp is legal to produce and sell within the state. However, the product must be tested and certified by the state to ensure it meets the required THC threshold.

Controlled Substances Act

Despite the Hemp Pilot Program, Wisconsin's Controlled Substances Act still lists all derivatives of cannabis, including CBD, as Schedule I controlled substances. This means that, technically, possession of CBD could be considered illegal under certain circumstances. However, enforcement of this law appears to be inconsistent, adding to the confusion around CBD's legal status in the state.


In conclusion, the legality of CBD in Wisconsin is complex. While federal law permits the use of hemp-derived CBD, Wisconsin state law presents a more nuanced picture. Under the state's Hemp Pilot Program, CBD derived from industrial hemp is legal, provided it meets certain requirements. However, the state's Controlled Substances Act still categorizes CBD as a controlled substance, potentially making its possession illegal in certain circumstances. As such, individuals looking to purchase or possess CBD in Wisconsin should proceed with caution and stay informed about the evolving legal landscape.

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