A couple of years ago, the Travel Security Administration’s (TSA) website was accidentally updated to include a “yes” for medical marijuana on the “What Can I Bring?” page. Unfortunately, back in 2017 this was simply a mistake in a website update. It was fixed within two hours, and a firm “no” was back in place when it comes to flying with medical cannabis. However, the TSA updated the same page again just this week and now CBD and hemp products are officially something you can bring on flights – within specific limitations.
“TSA was made aware of an FDA-approved drug that contains CBD oil for children who experience seizures from pediatric epilepsy,” the spokesperson told Marijuana Moment. “To avoid confusion as to whether families can travel with this drug, TSA immediately updated TSA.gov once we became aware of the issue.”
Over Memorial Day weekend, the TSA made a point to change their website, stating that they were now allowing hemp-derived CBD both in carry-on and checked bags. According to them, this update was made to comply with federal changes. The ‘federal changes’ the TSA is referring to are the 2018 Farm Bill – which federally legalized hemp and its derivatives – and the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the CBD-based epilepsy medication Epidiolex.
Now, under ‘Medical Marijuana’, the TSA website reads:
“Possession of marijuana and certain cannabis infused products, including some Cannabidiol (CBD) oil, remain illegal under federal law. TSA officers are required to report any suspected violations of law, including possession of marijuana and certain cannabis infused products.
Products/medications that contain hemp-derived CBD or are approved by the FDA are legal as long as it is produced within the regulations defined by the law under the Agriculture Improvement Act 2018.
TSA’s screening procedures are focused on security and are designed to detect potential threats to aviation and passengers. Accordingly, TSA security officers do not search for marijuana or other illegal drugs, but if any illegal substance is discovered during security screening, TSA will refer the matter to a law enforcement officer.”
Of course, the downside to this is that it could be difficult for TSA officers to determine what is hemp-derived CBD and what is not. This could lead to more problems down the road when it comes to people being detained or their medicine being discarded when it was within their rights to have it. However, you can now freely travel with hemp-derived CBD products, and at least some patients can take comfort in that fact.