There is unquestionably a ‘disconnect’ between many states in America regarding marijuana legality. We have cannabis-friendly states such as California, Colorado, and Oregon on one side. On the other, there remain staunch anti-marijuana locations, including Kansas and Idaho.
In general, you know where you stand legally in each state regarding cannabis. The same can’t be said for CBD. Most states permit its use even if many don’t have specific legislation. However, obscure local and county laws can confuse residents.
This is why we have created guides to inform you of the situation regarding cannabidiol in various states. This article takes a look at whether CBD oil is legal in Mississippi. It also outlines where you can purchase the substance and briefly investigates the Magnolia State’s marijuana laws.
Is CBD Legal in Mississippi?
The 2018 Farm Bill may have legalized industrial hemp cultivation. However, it didn’t permit CBD on a federal level. As a result, each state has different cannabidiol laws. In Mississippi, CBD oil is legal for medical use, although the rules are not the same as most other states.
House Bill 1231 (Harper Grace’s Law), legislation passed by the House and Senate in 2014, was the first law that officially legalized CBD in some capacity. However, it was a restrictive measure, as the CBD had to come from one of three approved research centers.
It also had to contain at least 15% CBD and a maximum of 0.5% THC. Furthermore, a licensed physician in the state had to obtain it for a patient. The physician was also responsible for directly supervising the administration of the oil.
Moreover, only patients with a debilitating epileptic condition could apply.
Fortunately, the state changed its stance. Mississippi has become less harsh in its anti-cannabinoid crusade. Lawmakers passed SB 2610 in 2017. It permitted CBD use in researching several medical conditions, including the treatment of seizures.
However, it wasn’t until July 2019 that the state officially legalized CBD for the general population via House Bill 1547. The law removed hemp-derived CBD products from the Schedule I controlled substance list.
Does Mississippi Have a Possession Limit?
No, but the state is stricter regarding regulating CBD products. HB 1547 specifically legalized CBD products with at least 50mg of CBD per ml. Also, the maximum level of THC is 2.5mg per ml. Therefore, a 30ml bottle of CBD oil must contain at least 1,500mg of CBD and no more than 75mg of THC.
In essence, CBD products need to have a CBD to THC ratio of at least 20:1. This contrasts with most states that allow products with a maximum THC content of 0.3%, with no minimum CBD content.
HB 1547 also established a hemp cultivation task force to look into the benefits and economic costs of hemp growing.
Where Can I Buy CBD in Mississippi?
If you decide to use CBD in Mississippi, make sure you only use brands that offer third-party lab reports. This information enables you to determine how much CBD and THC are in each product. Otherwise, you could find yourself in trouble. Possessing any amount of CBD with over 2.5mg of THC per ml is illegal. Police in the state will also arrest anyone in possession of a product that resembles cannabis.
Despite the restrictions, many physical stores sell CBD in Mississippi. Here are five with positive customer reviews.
What Are the Marijuana Laws in Mississippi?
On November 3, 2020, 74% of voters said ‘yes’ to Initiative 65, legalizing medical marijuana in the state.
According to Initiative 65, the Mississippi Department of Health had to create rules and regulations for an MMJ program by July 1, 2021. The Department was also supposed to issue ID cards and treatment center licenses by August 15, 2021. However, it became a long and drawn-out affair due to a legal challenge filed by the Mayor of Madison, Mary Hawkins Butler.
This meant the program was delayed, but finally, in February 2022, Governor Tate Reeves signed an MMJ bill into law. However, Mississippi residents must wait patiently for legal sales to begin. Therefore, at present, the existing penalties for marijuana sale, possession, and use still apply in the state.
Cannabis Penalties in Mississippi
Mississippi law has decriminalized the possession of up to 30 grams of marijuana. However, the state issues harsh penalties beyond that. When caught with under 30 grams of cannabis, a second offense is a misdemeanor and results in up to 60 days in prison with a five-day jail term, the mandatory minimum. A third offense could see you spend up to six months in jail.
If you have over 30 grams of marijuana, it is a felony crime with a jail term of up to three years. It doesn’t matter if it is your first offense. Once caught with 250+ grams, you could receive a prison term of eight years.
The sale of any amount of cannabis in Mississippi is a felony and carries jail time of up to three years. Once the amount exceeds 500 grams, the maximum sentence increases to 20 years. Incidentally, selling to a minor or within 1500 feet of a church, school, or another designated area is a felony that carries double prison time and fines.
How to Get a Hemp Grower’s License in Mississippi
The 2018 Farm Bill legalized the cultivation of the crop federally. However, the onus is on states to take the first step. This involves submitting a hemp growing program to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for approval. Mississippi was one of the few states to hold out on legalizing hemp growing initially.
Fortunately, common sense prevailed in the state. In March 2020, Senate Bill 2725 easily passed the House. The Senate then amended the bill, and the House concurred with the changes.
Mississippi finally passed the Act into law in June 2020. It legalized hemp cultivation and directed the Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce to create a plan. However, farmers looking to grow hemp must send their hemp production applications directly to the USDA. This is because Mississippi lawmakers decided not to provide the funding needed for a state program.
Therefore, you must create an account using the Hemp eManagement Platform (HeMP) and use it to send a USDA Hemp Application. It is also necessary to provide a copy of your FBI criminal history report. You are deemed ineligible if you have been convicted of a felony related to a controlled substance in the last ten years.
Prospective hemp growers should consider contacting the Mississippi Industrial Hemp Association (MIHA). It is a non-profit organization that offers education, resources, and practical expertise for anyone interested in cultivating hemp. It costs $200 per annum to join MIHA, which takes 30% of your annual product profits.
Final Thoughts on Cannabis and CBD Laws in Mississippi
Mississippi residents voted overwhelmingly to allow cannabis in November 2020. However, a flaw in the state’s ballot initiative process meant the Mississippi Supreme Court struck the program down.
Fortunately, MMJ is now a reality in the state, with the governor signing the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act into law in February 2022. However, sales have yet to begin, so please note that the existing marijuana penalties apply even if you’re eligible for MMJ.
Rather than risking imprisonment, it is best if you consider using CBD in Mississippi instead. The cannabinoid is legal, but products must contain at least 50mg of CBD per ml and a maximum of 2.5mg of THC per ml.
In some ways, the state’s stance on cannabidiol isn’t a bad compromise at all. Customers are guaranteed products with significant amounts of CBD. It is handy in an unregulated industry to know that you’ll get plenty of CBD for your cash. Also, the low THC level means you don’t have to worry about intoxication. Nonetheless, make sure you only buy from physical stores or online brands that provide third-party lab testing.