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For a Hot Minute, Target Was Selling CBD Oil Online

Target, everyone’s favorite everything store, went a little edgy last week by selling CBD oil online, which contains a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis. But as of today, the items have been removed from the company’s online store and it’s not totally clear why the decision was made.

“We started carrying Charlotte’s Web hemp extract items last week on Target.com,” the store told SELF in a statement. “After further review, we have decided to remove it from our assortment.”

Although it’s not clear why Target decided to sell the oil originally or why the company removed it from its online store, it’s possible that the company could have been a little confused. Recent years have seen an explosion in CBD products (also referred to as “cannabidiol”) marketed for all kinds of wellness issues, including insomnia, anxiety, and even period cramps. A large part of the the products’ popularity is that, unlike THC, CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning it doesn’t get you high. Plus there’s some real research behind it as a treatment for severe cases of childhood epilepsy.

But the confusion comes from the fact that many of these products are marketed as being “legal in all 50 states” or something similar. However, Justin Strekal, political director for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), tells SELF that CBD is federally illegal and has a schedule 1 status. That means the DEA believes that CBD offers no medical benefits and has the potential to be highly addictive. “No matter what theories you read on the internet [that CBD’s been] legalized nationwide, it is flat out not true,” he says.

At the state level, however, Strekal explains that CBD may be legal in states that have medical or recreational cannabis laws on the books, including the 16 states that have legalized CBD only. But, just as with any other product containing a compound found in cannabis, CBD is still very much illegal at the federal level—even if it’s being extracted from hemp.

So, in selling the CBD oil online, Target may have committed a big no-no by allowing people in states without that legislation to buy it, a.k.a. breaking the law. “There is a tremendous potential economy once we legalize marijuana nationwide,” Strekal says, “and it looks like Target jumped the gun a little.”

SELF has reached out to CW Hemp for comment and will update this post if we hear back.

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Big-box retailers aren’t selling CBD yet, but they’re busy getting ready for the day when they can.

The Post has learned that top executives at major chains such as Walmart and Target have been quietly meeting with makers of drinks, gummy bears, topical creams and oils that are infused with cannabidiol, or CBD.

CBD is an ingredient in marijuana plants that doesn’t get you high, but is said to relieve pain as well as stress symptoms including anxiety and insomnia.

The chains, which also include big supermarkets such as Kroger and Safeway, are requesting samples of CBD products, along with lab results and pricing information, manufacturers said.

That’s despite the fact that the Food and Drug Administration said in December that it’s illegal to spike food and beverages with CBD or THC — the pot ingredient that does get you high — or to transport them over state lines.

“We are flying around the country, talking to all the big guys at their headquarters,” said Christian Graversen, brand manager of California-based CBDfx, a 6-year-old company that makes more than 50 CBD-infused products including a $10 package of eight gummy bears.

“We are going multiple times to the same companies, meeting with their senior buyers, legal departments and merchandising executives,” Graversen added.

Major retailers are angling for a piece of the exploding CBD industry, which is expected to more than double to $2.1 billion by next year as consumers pay premium prices for products to treat maladies ranging from arthritis to ADHD.

Up to now, the lion’s share of the CBD bonanza has been going to mom-and-pop shops. But a few bigger chains, including Walgreens, CVS and GNC, have begun selling CBD-infused topical creams that treat wrinkles and pain in states where they’re allowed, including New York.

“We do not have plans to carry CBD products at this time,” Walmart said in a statement, declining to elaborate on its CBD strategy.

Big-box retailers aren’t selling CBD yet, but they’re busy getting ready for the day when they can.