Disclaimer: The information in this article comes from thorough and credible research; however, we do not claim to be able to provide legal counsel. For further questions, we recommend you ask for the appropriate legal advice. 

The CBD phenomenon comes with a plethora of possible cannabis products from candles to combinations with food or beverages. Before jumping straight into starting a CBD business, it is essential to find out what you are permitted and not permitted to do. For example, do you need a license to sell CBD in California? This article dives into exploring the nitty-gritty details of licensing to sell CBD in the state of California. 

What is CBD?

To start, we need to know what CBD is to clearly define what constitutes a CBD product. CBD or cannabidiol is one of many cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. According to the Cannabidiol Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report by Source Type, the industry itself has been growing to a whopping USD 2.8 billion in 2020 internationally. Additionally, the slowly improving public opinion and government approval forecast climbing numbers.

CBD is usually sought after due to its therapeutic and relaxing effects without the psychoactive elements. Due to this absence of THC, it won’t necessarily get you “high”. It can mitigate anxiety and depression as well as cancer-related symptoms. It takes second place with the highest cannabinoid concentration after THC.

CBD is one of the chemicals found in hemp, a plant of the Cannabis sativa species. Although hemp does not have a high THC content, the federal or state policies lump it together with all the cannabis strains— an issue we will delve deeper into later on.

growing hemp in california

Also read Is Weed Legal In Chicago, Illinois?.

Can I Get Imprisoned for Selling CBD Products? 

California is known to be one of the most tolerant states towards the legalization of CBD in the country. It is even considered to be a big supporter of the CBD market than any other state in the U.S. Despite the fact that CBD has a THC content of under 0.3%, federal law is still vague about the policies regarding practices for businesses. 

The law, particularly the Controlled Substances Act, guided citizens on the use of the cannabis plant. A while back, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) had taken down CBD from the list of controlled substances, and public hearings were held regarding how to regulate its use. Everyone is just waiting for one last requirement: a guideline for CBD products for the consumer and business owner. 

Debates are still ongoing; however, the understanding, for now, is that selling CBD products with THC levels above 0.3% is against pre-established federal laws. This means you have to be more educated about the CBD you are selling. 

Can Anyone Sell CBD Oil in California, or Do I Need a License?

Regulations vary from state to state. The first step is to read all the policies in your state carefully and educate yourself about the do’s and don’ts. 

The California Industrial Hemp Farming Act, SB 566, gave the authorization in 2017 for the commercial manufacturing of industrialized hemp, authorizing the commercial production of industrial hemp. This law became effective on January 1, 2017.  The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) is still working on a program to regulate the inclusions in the law at varying levels.

If you are planning to cultivate your own CBD, you also have to register with the help of a county agricultural commissioner. You have to apply for registration on the CDFA Industrial Hemp Program website. There is a yearly registration fee of $900 at the moment. 

can i grow hemp at home in california

Also read Unique Ways To Improve Your Cannabis Marketing.

Words of Advice for Upcoming CBD Sellers

Decide what products you want to specialize in. A certain type of product might be more appealing to your brand or customers. What do your consumers gravitate towards? Gummies, capsules, salves, candles, etc. There are many options to choose from. Find the balance between your vision and the needs of the market. 

Choose credible sources. How well do you know your wholesaler? Is their quality up to par with others around? Are you sure their CBD isn’t fake? Are they reliable? Make sure to ask yourself these questions before partnering up with inconsistent or deceptive scammers.

Involve yourself with people who have good reputations for being trustworthy in their own business or practices. If they have a social media presence or a website, do your research.

Wholesale is where it’s at. Look for honest and reasonable CBD suppliers who can provide high-quality CBD at good prices. You can explore your options with a variety of choices like CBD wholesale Texas or CBD wholesale Colorado. 

Get connected. Connect with like-minded people to gather more information about CBD and how to expand your network. Be updated with the trends of the times. Read and watch the news. Be in the know about the most recent federal laws that apply to your business. 


There is a huge market for CBD products right now. But, to get into the industry you will need to do your research and make sure what you’re doing is legal and safe. Only go for products under 0.3% THC and choose reliable sources to ensure the quality of items you are creating and selling. While the California CBD industry is exploding, getting all the information you can is the first step to growing your brand, consumers, and profit.