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CBD products are popping up in stores throughout Iowa. But are they legal?

Beauty fans will try anything at least once.

From grocery stores to athletic clubs, CBD-based products are becoming increasingly common in Iowa.

But are they legal?

State authorities say CBD, or cannabidiol, is a derivative of marijuana and a controlled substance. Proponents of the substance say CBD products contain little or no THC, the chemical that makes recreational marijuana users high.

Merchants — and more than a few people who use their products — say CBD eases an array of maladies by working with nerve receptors in the body. They credit it with helping with anxiety, sleeplessness, pain, inflammation and, in children, epilepsy.

“I have less pain,” said Shelby Long, 27, who has used CBD gummies and a topical cream to help alleviate back pain and symptoms of eczema and tendinitis. “It’s like taking a Tylenol, but it’s better for your kidneys.”

CBD (Photo: Carly Mallenbaum)

The Des Moines woman said she thought U.S. lawmakers had legalized CBD products last year. She purchased gummies and cream from a shop on the city’s south side that sells glass pipes.

But this week, law enforcement in the tiny northeast Iowa town of Clermont searched T’s Brick City Spa for CBD products and confiscated items from the small establishment. They ordered the business, which offers massage, facial and skin treatments, to stop selling products containing CBD.

“If the law is the law then every sheriffs department should be dealing with this the same,” said Tanya Tysland, owner of T’s Brick City Spa. “I think Iowa really needs to quickly figure this out and stop harassing small business owners.”

Police in Muscatine and Carroll have conducted similar searches at other businesses and seized oils, lotions and candies that merchants touted as containing benign extracts from hemp plants.

“It has been a common misconception that CBD oil and any hemp derivatives are legal,” the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office wrote Wednesday in an online statement after the search at T’s Brick City Spa. “Iowa law still holds any derivatives from the cannabis sativa plant as a Schedule I Controlled Substance.”

Fayette County Sheriff’s Office

If it’s illegal, why is CBD so easy to find?

Iowa lawmakers passed the first Medical Cannabidiol Act in 2014, making it legal for a doctor to prescribe CBD oil for the treatment of epilepsy.

The law was expanded in 2017 to add Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s, multiple sclerosis, cancer and other conditions to the list of maladies the state says can be treated with CBD oil prescribed by a doctor.

Then, last year, Congress passed the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized the production of hemp containing less than .3 percent THC, and the use of hemp and its derivatives across state lines.

CBD supporters saw it as a major step, paving the way for CBD oils, lotions and creams to be used and sold in stores.

However, over-the-counter CBD products are still illegal in Iowa, and that won’t change until the Legislature decides to change the law or more direction on the Farm Bill comes from the federal government, said Dale Woolery, associate director of the Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy.

“We don’t want to affect commerce, but we don’t want anyone getting sick or being impaired,” he said.

That leaves local police agencies and county attorneys to decide how strictly they enforce state law covering CBD products sold in stores.

The Des Moines Police Department’s narcotics unit has made seizures of CBD products — “some significant in quantity” — from stores, Des Moines police spokesman Sgt. Paul Parizek said.

But Des Moines police have not issued criminal changes, he said.

That’s also the case in Muscatine and Fayette counties, where authorities confiscated products but didn’t file charges.

CBD oil. (Photo: Tony Leys/The Register)

Growth of retailers selling CBD products in Des Moines

After 25 years spent supplying junk food, pop and chips to convenience stores, Tony Sparks founded Betterment Retail Solutions Inc., a West Des Moines-based company that brings CBD- and hemp-based goods to retailers.

His products include lip balms, cookie dough protein bars, bottled water, tincture (an herbal extract), mints and chocolate bars.

While Sparks said he knows his products can help people suffering from health ailments, the profitability of CBD products and the loose regulation in the state has brought out vendors willing to sell products even if they are unaware of the contents.

He said he wants lawmakers to legalize CBD for over-the-counter use and put rules and regulations in place to weed out bad actors.

“Until then, it’s the wild, wild west,” he said.

Lacie Navin, the owner of Your CBD Store in Urbandale, spent a Thursday afternoon answering questions about CBD bath bombs and tincture doses from middle-aged and elderly customers.

The professional photographer said she opened the CBD specialty store after her uncle, who suffers from chronic fibromyalgia, found relief from using the products.

Information kept at the counter of the Corner Store Apothecary in Cedar Rapids illustrates what supporters say are some of the potential benefits of CBD products. (Photo: Tony Leys/The Register)

“We were skeptical as most people are, and I watched it change his life,” Navin said.

She said she, too, is frustrated with the growing number of stores selling CBD items with little knowledge of the products or how they are used.

“I spend my days researching and looking at the newest formulations,” Navin said.

Popular chain stores like Natural Grocers and Fresh Thyme, and local favorites like Gateway Market and Campbell’s Nutrition, all carry CBD oil.

Diane Lahodny, owner of Campbell’s Nutrition, began carrying CBD years ago after learning about the health benefits. She tested the tinctures and lotions she sells, which typically range between .04 to .08 THC, she said.

She doesn’t expect to expand her products to include candies because of their sugar content, and because she’s unsure if they would pass her vetting process.

“We have daily feedback from people. Positive feedback,” Lahodny said. “Especially for relieving minor aches and pains and anxiety.”

Gateway Market started selling CBD water at its Woodland Avenue store in February.

“We wanted something more food driven,” store director David Clemens said. “I figured the infused water would be a good place to start.”

Clemens said he’s watched the CBD market grow in natural and health food stores and he wanted to try it out at Gateway Market. The store’s sold several cases of the bottled water since adding it last month.

He’s considered expanding the CBD offerings at Gateway, but products like gummies and chocolates are pricey, he said.

“The number of vendors manufacturing it is still pretty small,” Clemens said.

Even if the price is high, retailers are finding that customers are willing to shell out the money for a product they believe works.

“I don’t feel comfortable taking Tylenol and ibuprofen every day, because I already take a lot of other medications,” said Long, the Des Moines woman who uses gummies and cream.

The CBD products alleviate her back pain and help lessen symptoms of other issues, she said.

“It’s definitely not just a placebo effect.”

CBD oils can be prescribed to treat certain conditions in Iowa, but over-the-counter CBD products are illegal in the state.

CBD Oil In Iowa — Where To Buy Locally, Laws & Advice

Written by QuitNet January 9, 2021

If you live in Iowa and want to purchase high-quality CBD oil, then you are in luck! If you are tired of being stressed, in pain, and forced to deal with other health problems, buying CBD oil can provide a range of health benefits, such as relief from everyday stress and body pains. In this post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about buying CBD oil in Iowa.

CBD Oil in Iowa

There are two types of CBD oils available to purchase today, one that is extracted from hemp and one that is extracted from marijuana.

While both of them are available in Iowa, one is easier to get than the other. We’ll get to the legalities in a second.

But first, a quick disclaimer:

Due to poor quality products appearing on store shelves, we no longer recommend buying CBD oil from local shops in Iowa.

For the best quality, we strongly suggest buying from our recommended CBD brands below.

Is CBD oil legal in Iowa?

What’s the Iowa law surrounding CBD? If you are a newcomer to the CBD scene, then there is something you must know: CBD oil can either be derived from hemp or marijuana.

Thanks to the farm bill, hemp is fully legal due to having a low THC content (THC is the product that makes you high), marijuana based CBD oil (using the cannabis plant) has far more THC inside of it, and it is illegal to sell or possess recreational marijuana in Iowa.

According to the Iowa department of public health, medical marijuana for the treatment of seizures and epilepsy is allowed In Iowa, but to get medical marijuana, you’d need to get a document that is signed by a doctor to prove that you have the medical condition that the medical marijuana is designed to treat. If you don’t have that, you can’t use it legally. That’s the only way you will be able to get marijuana-based CBD oil in the state.

Where to buy hemp-based CBD oil in Iowa

Because hemp is fully legal on the federal level, that’s what you’ll find in all the stores, and if you are looking for high-quality pain and stress relief, then you should consider getting high quality hemp oil.

The Quitnet team can guess that quality is important to you, and hemp-based CBD oil can provide much of the benefits of medical marijuana.

You’ll be able to get CBD oil extracted from hemp even if you are not a patient and don’t have epilepsy. It’s worth a try if you’ve done everything else and have read about the benefits of CBD.

There is no difference between the CBD in hemp and marijuana, which is why hemp-based CBD oil can be a totally effective alternative to marijuana-based oil.

Finding the best CBD oil in Iowa

Trying to find buy CBD oil at local stores is extremely tricky.

As we mentioned above, we do not recommend buying CBD oil at local stores in Iowa due to the increasing number of poor quality products on the shelves. These CBD products are ineffective and can sometimes do more harm than good.

Instead, if you live in Iowa and you’d like to try CBD oil, we recommend buying online from our recommended brands.

However, if you insist on buying from a local store, make sure to fully research and check on the CBD brand before you use it. Look for these specific items:

  1. The oil should be made from naturally grown, non-GMO hemp which keeps things like pesticides out of the oil.
  2. Products should be quality tested by a third-party lab and you should be able to see the results.
  3. The extraction process should be done with CO2 extraction, which is the most effective extraction available today.

Quitnet strongly suggests that any brand you choose adheres to these three standards. This will ensure that you get the best quality for your CBD oil.

If you can’t find these standards, then the oil is probably not for you. For an example of a high-quality brand, check out any of our top 5 recommendations.

Buying CBD oil locally in Iowa

While we think that buying online is a better choice for getting hemp-based CBD oil, depending on your experience it can sometimes be easier to go to a physical store and talk to the owners.

Ask about the standards listed above to ensure that you are getting high-quality oil that will actually work for you, and if you get straight answers then there’s no reason not to trust your gut and buy those items.

We have a list of some popular licensed dispensaries that you can buy from in Iowa. Checking them out could give you some good results.

  • Davenport CBD shops: Vape Café and Wellness Center, The Vapor Shop, Yabba Dabbas House of Glass
  • Cedar Rapids shops: Corner Store Apothecary, Your CBD Store
  • Waterloo: Green Fields Health Food Center, GNC, Central Iowa Vapors

Takeaway

According to law enforcement and the department of agriculture, CBD oil is 100% legal to buy and use in Iowa.

If you decide to buy from a local store, don’t be afraid to ask the questions about quality, and ensure that you get good answers before you complete your purchase.

In order to ensure you get the best quality, Quitnet recommends buying CBD oil through online retailers. Never sacrifice quality for price, because that won’t ease your stress or pain. As long as you remember that, you’ll always be able to get the best CBD oil from any retailer.

Then you can use it to live a happier, healthier life, and free yourself from unnecessary stress and pain. Who doesn’t want that?

If you live in Iowa and want to purchase high-quality CBD oil, then you are in luck! If you are tired of being stressed, in pain, and forced to deal with