COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio State Highway Patrol seized 55 gallons of CBD oil earlier this week in Muskingum County, 60 miles east of Columbus, during a routine traffic stop on interstate 70.
Officers say they had probable cause to search the U-Haul truck, and found the CBD product in the back of the U-Haul truck.
Reports say the seized oil from this particular traffic stop was worth $165,000. It's not clear whether the CBD 'oil' seized was in extract form or retail form, or if the product was valued according to retail or wholesale prices.
CBD extract market prices vary between $2,000 and $10,000 per pound, depending on quality and volume purchased. CBD Oil in finished form, ready for retail, sells to consumers for $.10 to $.20 per milligram.
There are roughly 454,000 milligrams in one pound. It sounds like the product seized in this case was in finished form, and valued at what it would sell for at retail. Despite the reported 55 gallons of oil, it could represent just 2 to 4 pounds of actual CBD content.
Still, the two Rhode Island men transporting the CBD product are facing up to 11 years in prison and $20,000 in fines if convicted.
CBD is booming in popularity nationwide. The Farm Bill passed in December of 2018 clarified hemp and hemp-derived products as "those containing .3% or less of THC by dry weight." The Farm Bills' passage left just two states with laws declaring CBD with less than .3% THC totally illicit: Nebraska and South Dakota.
Our research has shown Ohio to be a bit of a gray area. While the Farm Bills cleared up some confusion, efforts to keep Ohio's medical marijuana program going smoothly have led to some interesting applications of Ohio state law, which doesn't seem to acknowledge the difference between CBD oil made from hemp, and CBD oil made from marijuana.
Our own collective experience and research leads us to believe that perhaps this bust was a consequence of carrying CBD oil with THC contents above the federal legal limit of .03%. AP reporting, however, makes no indication of this.