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CBD Flower: Good or Bad?

Posted by Jim Higdon on Jul 31st 2020

CBD Flower: Good or Bad?

Let's explore the least known product inside the CBD industry: CBD flower.

Hemp flower, also called CBD flower, is a fairly new concept. Is it the same as marijuana? Does it have the same wellness benefits of CBD oil? The widespread acceptance of CBD, largely due to the fact that CBD doesn’t get you high, has led to CBD available in many forms, ranging from oils, lotions, candies, and yes, even as CBD flower that you can smoke.

As one of the primary sources and most natural forms of CBD, demand for hemp flower is on the rise. Because it’s so new, people have all kinds of questions about it. In this guide, we will tell you everything you need to know about CBD hemp flower by answering all your burning questions.

What is CBD Flower?

Hemp is a term used to classify varieties of the Cannabis sativa plant that contain not more than 0.3% of the psychoactive compound called THC. Because federal law only regulates hemp’s THC level, farmers across America are free to grow the same plant with high levels of CBD with legal levels of THC.

Hemp was banned in America starting in 1937, and then again under the Controlled Substance Act in 1970. This prohibition was driven by racism. The impact of hemp prohibition over the past century has been to hurt communities of color to a much greater degree than white communities. With the 2018 Farm Bill, though, America has begun a return to its roots as a nation where cannabis is legal.

After being shunned for over decades, hemp-derived products are once again in the spotlight. Hempseed oil is found in salad dressings, paint, and many body care products. The stalk’s fibers are used in clothing, construction materials, paper, and much more. Farmers also harvest the hemp flowers for CBD. And that’s where things get interesting.

Although hemp flower is commonly processed to create CBD oil, it turns out that you can consume the flower itself to get the same effects.

Hemp Flower vs Marijuana

The difference between hemp and marijuana is a confusing subject to tackle. Because the two terms have been used interchangeably for years, the difference becomes a little fuzzy. It’s important to make a distinction, though. They are entirely different in their effects.

You are probably familiar with cannabidiol, or CBD for short. CBD doesn’t get you “high,” and it’s completely legal in the US. Its proponents claim that CBD is a great way to get the purported health benefits of cannabis without sacrificing your sobriety.

THC, on the other hand, is a different cannabinoid that does affect the mind. THC has fueled the American counter-culture for decades, and that’s one reason why cannabis remains illegal under federal law.

However, hemp flower contains a high percentage of CBD, and a very low amount of THC to make it legal under federal law. So what’s all this mean? In short: marijuana gets you high; hemp flower does not. And hemp flower is legal under federal law.

Does Hemp Smell Like Weed?

Yes, hemp flower looks and smells just like marijuana. Because hemp is a cannabis plant, hemp flower is indistinguishable from marijuana by smell.

Although hemp doesn’t contain much THC, the smell of cannabis doesn’t come from THC. The strong odor of marijuana actually has no bearing on its THC content but THC has no odor. The scent of cannabis comes from aromatic molecules called terpenes.

Different strains have different terpenes. And different terpenes ratios create different scents. There are strains of cannabis that smell fruity, earthy, floral, and so on.

Is Hemp Flower Legal?

Hemp is legal under federal law, but many states still block flower at the state level. The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the federal list of controlled substances. So, is CBD flower legal? Yes, but some police agencies have trouble accepting this reality, and want to keep it illegal.

Therefore, we recommend being extremely careful with hemp flower. Although it’s completely legal to own and consume hemp flower, it often looks and smells a lot like “the real deal.” That could potentially attract unwanted attention.

Recent reports from all over the US have made it clear that, because they look and smell so similar, most law enforcement officials are unable to distinguish the difference between marijuana and premium CBD flower.

The field tests that police officers use on the street will indicate a “positive” result if the substance they test contains THC in any amount. Since hemp flower contains trace amounts of THC, the tests will come back positive. That means law enforcement could easily mistake your legal hemp for illegal marijuana.

Although a more in-depth test will reveal that the flower is indeed legal hemp, it’s best to save yourself the headache and be discreet as possible with your consumption.

If you’re in a state where marijuana is illegal, leave your hemp flower in the package until you’re ready to consume it. Don’t flaunt hemp flowers in public, and do not travel with a large amount of hemp on your person or in your vehicle.

Again, hemp flower is totally legal. But because of racist drug laws, it’s best to be safe to avoid any conflict with law enforcement.

Can I Fail a Drug Test from CBD?

The legal limit for THC in hemp is 0.3% or less, so full spectrum products like hemp flower will usually contain trace amounts of THC. Although this is not nearly enough THC to get you “high,” the low amounts of THC in hemp flower can build up in your system over time, which could potentially cause you to test positive on a drug test.

Here’s the bottom line: if you’re subjected to drug tests for any reason, use CBD products at your own risk. Here at Cornbread Hemp, all of our CBD products contain a legal dose of THC. If enough of this THC is present in your system at the time of your drug screening, you could test positive and face the consequences.

We’re fighting to change these out-dated practices based in a legacy of structural racism. But as long as the War on Drugs continues, it’s an unfortunate truth that you could be arrested if caught with legal hemp flower.

What are the Benefits of CBD Flower?

Smoking hemp flower has many of the benefits that you would get from smoking marijuana. But because it has high amounts of CBD and extremely low THC, hemp flower smokers won’t feel impaired.

The scientific community is just starting to understand the effects that cannabinoids have on the human body. Many users claim that consuming hemp flower is therapeutic for them. As of right now, these claims are entirely anecdotal.

High-CBD Hemp Flower vs CBD Oil

By now, you have seen CBD oil, which is a concentrated form of hemp extract derived from hemp flower.

If you’re looking for a CBD product, you might consider hemp flower as an alternative to CBD oil. While the two products are wonderful options on their own, they’re different.

First, hemp flower is an extremely natural way to consume CBD. It comes straight off the stalk, which means it hasn’t been distilled, and no cannabinoids have been lost in the extraction process.

With hemp flower, you’re getting the full spectrum of THC, terpenes, and other cannabinoids that are found in hemp. Recent studies have shown that these different compounds tend to harmonize with CBD in what’s known as the entourage effect.

Another awesome benefit of hemp flower is in its compelling uses. Unlike CBD oil, which is typically taken orally, you can inhale hemp flower through combustion or vaporization, and you can even cook the CBD into a recipe!

How is CBD Flower Used?

There are several ways to consume CBD flower. Here, we will explore the three main methods.

Cooking and Baking With Hemp Flower

Because CBD is fat soluble, it’s fairly simple to create your own hemp-infused butters and oils, much like you would make a normal cannabutter. From there, you can bake or cook your fat into any dish of your choosing.

With decarboxylated CBD flower, you could make “diet pot” brownies to chill with your friends. You could spread CBD-infused butter on pizza crust for a relaxing movie night. The possibilities are nearly endless, so we encourage you to get creative and let us know how it goes!

Although this method is entirely possible at home, the extraction process can be a bit tedious. The effects are also more drawn out, as the CBD has to travel through your digestive tract to get into your bloodstream. This results in slower absorption. Regardless of the downsides, cooking and baking with CBD can be extremely fun> We encourage you to try it!

Smoking CBD Flower

If you are looking for the full hemp experience in the shortest amount of time, inhaling CBD is the way to go. Just like marijuana, you can smoke hemp flower to experience its effects. The interesting part about CBD is that it has extremely high bioavailability when it’s inhaled.

Smoking hemp flower puts the cannabinoids in contact with your lungs, where it gets transferred directly into your bloodstream. This means that you will feel the effects quicker, and it will have more of an impact compared to oral administration, giving you the most “bang for your buck.” But before you smoke your hemp flower, consider this…

Risks of Smoking Hemp Flower

Although smoking hemp flower will not expose you to the amount of cancerous carcinogens that you find in cigarettes. That doesn’t necessarily mean that there is no health risk at all.

When you light anything on fire, it will create carbon monoxide. Whether a cigarette, marijuana, hemp flower, or even a campfire, any kind of smoke is technically harmful to your lungs. If you choose to smoke hemp flower, it’s important for you to know that it isn’t 100% safe. And that leads us into our next method…

Vaporizing CBD Flower

If you want to get the benefits of inhaled cannabinoids but you’re worried about the health concerns involved in smoking it, you might consider a dry herb vaporizer.

Although recent news has warned about the dangers of “vaping,” this form of vapor is different. If you buy lab-tested hemp flower from a reputable source, you know exactly what you’re consuming and in what amounts.

Dry herb vaporizers work by heating up the hemp flowers to a temperature that is just below the point of combustion. When the flower gets to this temperature, the cannabinoids are activated to provide the full entourage effect without creating carcinogens.

In general, using a dry herb vaporizer is the easiest, most efficient, and healthiest way to consume hemp flower. As an added benefit, the vapor will be much smooth and flavorful in contrast with smoking.

How Much CBD Flower Can I Consumer?

Nobody has ever overdosed on CBD, so it all comes down to your personal preference. Some good general advice is to start small, work your way up, and see how it goes.