United States Postal Service rolls out rules for shipping hemp products in the mail

United States Postal Service rolls out rules for shipping hemp products in the mail

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The federal agency which handles huge amounts of snail mail and product shipping throughout the U.S. is now bringing customers more clarity on the topic of using their services to transport hemp and CBD products.

According to reporting published at the Boston Globe, the USPS recently released a public list of guidelines for shipping CBD within their delivery systems. This comes after the agency privately proliferated the rules within the body itself in March.

Marijuana Moment reported the change of USPS attitude originally. The statement from USPS runs as follows:

“Hemp and hemp-based products, including cannabidiol (CBD) with the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of such hemp (or its derivatives) not exceeding a 0.3 percent limit are permitted to be mailed only when:

a. The mailer complies with all applicable federal, state, and local laws (such as the Agricultural Act of 2014 and the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018) pertaining to hemp production, processing, distribution, and sales; and

b. The mailer retains records establishing compliance with such laws, including laboratory test results, licenses, or compliance reports, for no less than 2 years after the date of mailing.” [1] [3]

Instead of requiring mailers to send in verification from third-party labs as a precondition for using the USPS for CBD, USPS is simply asking that users of their services maintain their own records for at least two years after using USPS and offer them upon request. That makes the new regulations much more lax than even hemp advocates could have hoped for. [1]

“With this revision, the Postal Service intends to provide mailing standards that sufficiently address the current environment with regard to the domestic commercial transportation of cannabis-based products as well as those changes anticipated from the full implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill,” USPS said. [1] [3]

Hemp products with less than 0.3% THC, the active ingredient in marijuana that gets users high, are typically allowed for sale in the U.S. as long as they aren’t part of food and drink products.

This follows the federal legalization of the hemp plant in late 2018, which has spurred the booming CBD market and textile uses of hemp plants. State legislation on CBD differs greatly.

Still, the food and drink provision offers a different legal case, because the Food and Drug Administration has repeatedly asserted its right since the December legalization to regulate CBD in these instances, all while offering next to zero clarity on what they would allow.

A first-of-its-kind hearing was held on May 31 at the FDA, featuring 140 testimonies from consumers, retailers and critics of CBD. The meeting was a big step forward, but with very little progress made toward clearer federal rules.


[1] https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/marijuana/2019/06/13/postal-service-unveils-new-policy-mailing-hemp-derived-cbd-products/e6yhikXTJbpzfK7Wa4djkO/story.html

[2] https://www.postaltimes.com/postalnews/can-you-mail-cbd-the-u-s-postal-service-weighs-in/

[3] https://www.marijuanamoment.net/u-s-postal-service-issues-advisory-on-mailing-hemp-derived-cbd/