Typically, TSA officers do not search for marijuana or other illegal drugs during screening because their function is to detect threats to passengers, however, if illegal drugs are found during a security screening, the matter will be referred to law enforcement.
“TSA was made aware of an FDA-approved drug that contains CBD oil for children who experience seizures from pediatric epilepsy,” TSA regional spokesperson Mark Howell said in a statement. “To avoid confusion as to whether families can travel with this drug, TSA immediately updated TSA.gov once we became aware of the issue.”
The question of the legality of CBD oil and other hemp-based products has been in the national spotlight following the arrest of a great-grandmother for possessing CBD oil in Disney World, which she said was prescribed to her by a doctor.
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CBD products have become a rapidly growing trend across the nation. Some call it a medical miracle, while others condemn it because of its association with marijuana — CBD is drawn from hemp, and both hemp and marijuana are derived from the plant cannabis sativa.
TSA’s recent change was made in compliance with the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, which removed FDA-approved hemp and cannabis derivatives with “extremely low” levels of tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC, from the Controlled Substances Act. For hemp-derived CBD products to be legal under the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, they must contain less than 0.3% of THC, the compound found in marijuana that creates a high.
TSA officers were briefed on the updates, but because the update is new, some may not recognize the FDA-approved version of CBD products. Chances are, if you bought your CBD oil legally, it contains little-to-no THC because of the federal standards.
Keep in mind that the possession of marijuana, certain cannabis-infused products and some CBD oils are still illegal under federal law, and TSA officers are required to report any suspicions of legal violations, the policy stated.
To maintain the safety of travelers, the TSA prohibits certain items from being brought on board an aircraft, one of which is “medical marijuana,” including its derived products.
Thankfully, this issue has since been corrected by the TSA.
Hemp-Derived CBD vs. Marijuana Derived CBD
These are some of the questions that are leading travelers to think twice about packing CBD products in their luggage.
Because of this, it is important for travelers to research the rules and regulations of both the state being departed from and the state being traveled to.
In 2018, Hemp was reclassified as an agricultural commodity under the Agricultural Improvement Act and is no longer considered a controlled substance, which means that products using hemp-derived CBD are legal under federal law.