If you live in Iowa, you’ve probably seen a bunch of CBD products lining your favorite store’s shelves. What if we told you that those products are illegal?

You can buy CBD products from a lot of different stores in Iowa, but Iowa’s state laws still consider it illegal. If that confuses you at all, you’ll want to read the rest of this article.

State Laws

The 2018 Farm Bill made hemp-derived products legal as long they were produced with hemp that was grown legally. Somehow, Iowa has still managed to ban its citizens from using CBD products.

However, you can still purchase CBD products across the state. Does that sound confusing?

Well, there are a few things that we have to talk about to help you understand what’s going on in the state.

First, Iowa’s laws have not been updated to decriminalize the sale or purchase of CBD products. Legally, you have to have a prescription to do anything with a CBD product. That’s how it has been for a few years.

However, Iowa’s lawmakers have told police that it is up to them to enforce the laws or not. So, a lot of stores still sell CBD products illegally. Police officers just refuse to punish them.

That doesn’t mean that an Iowa store owner should sell CBD. While some police officers refuse to uphold the law, you can still be arrested, and you can be charged as if you’re selling marijuana.

That makes it extremely difficult for consumers. On one hand, you can walk into any gas station and buy a bunch of CBD. On the other hand, a police officer might decide to arrest you for marijuana possession as you exit the store. Obviously, that has a lot of consumers on edge. CBD products should be legal across the country, but states like Iowa are still acting as if it’s 1999.

Luckily, there is some good news available for residents of Iowa. If you live in Iowa, you should know that your state officials are currently working on legalizing CBD. They’re rewriting state regulations to ensure that citizens can purchase CBD without legal consequences, but they have to wait for the federal government to look over their new regulations. They aren’t willing to push boundaries like Missouri, Oregon, and California. The process is expected to be completed by 2020.

No one really knows what will happen in 2020. Iowa might become one of the most lenient states around, or they might be more strict than Texas. There’s no telling what will happen until the new regulations are approved in 2020.

Federal Laws

Federal laws have intimidated several states. Iowa is the perfect example of this. Instead of following in the footsteps of states such as Oregon and Illinois, Iowa has decided to have every one of their CBD regulations reviewed by the federal government before allowing stores to sell CBD legally.

Many states have been affected in the same way. Texas has no idea what to do about CBD, and New York has placed bans on things that consumers can make for themselves in a matter of seconds in a legal fashion.

The federal government has created an atmosphere of confusion among all of the states. The 2018 Farm Bill was supposed to do the exact opposite of that, but it failed.

For now, it seems as if the federal government won’t do anything for another five or six years. That’s the amount of time that the FDA claims it will need to properly test and regulate CBD on the federal level.

Hopefully, pressure from state officials will make it happen a lot sooner. Representatives from Oregon, California, Florida, Illinois, and several other states have continuously appealed to the FDA to speed up their work. So far, it hasn’t done anything, but if more states join the fight, we might see new regulations within a couple of years.

How To Use It

Right now, we don’t suggest buying CBD in Iowa. You might get away with it, and it might be on a lot of shelves, but it’s still illegal. If one cop has a bad day, he can arrest you as if you were carrying a large amount of marijuana around. In Iowa, that comes with a fairly long prison sentence.

However, you can buy it, and we’ll go over the products that you can find on store shelves. They aren’t legal, but they are available.


CBD oil is one of the most basic CBD products you can buy. It’s just a solution that contains a certain amount of CBD. The quantity of CBD in CBD oil is determined by the manufacturer and the product itself.

To use this, you simply drop some directly into your mouth. You can also mix it into drinks or food to make CBD infusions.

Be careful if you start out with this product, though. Some people get really bad headaches or fits of nausea when they consume CBD. If you take a lot of it, and you have a reaction, it can take a while for the side-effects to wear off. Test it out a little bit before you start using large amounts of it.

CBD Candy

These are illegal in states other than Iowa due to them being a food item. That’s not the case in every state, but you should check out our other articles to see if your state approves of CBD-infused foods.

CBD candy can come in a lot of different forms, but you’ll typically find it as a chocolate or a gummy. To use either variety, you simply eat the suggested amount and wait a bit. They’re kind of like edible marijuana products. You won’t notice an effect right away, but you’ll suddenly feel a rush of calmness. You won’t get high, though.

CBD Drinks

CBD drinks are also illegal in other states, and there are very few exceptions to that. However, it’s up to the police to enforce Iowa’s laws, and they’ve been fairly lenient. So, you can still find cans of CBD-infused beverages, and some bars might offer to mix a CBD cocktail for you.

These are simple to use. You just drink whatever product you purchased. If you make one yourself, try not to use too much CBD oil.

Pet Products

CBD pet products are also illegal in Iowa, but like other products, you’ll have to bump into a particularly strict cop to get in trouble for having them. That’s a good thing, because CBD pet products aren’t like human products.

We can use CBD products for medical reasons, but we can also use them just to relax and have a good time. Pets only get CBD products if they need them. The sprays developed for dogs and cats are meant to relieve pain that is caused by the aging process, and they can also help with some debilitating mental issues that some dogs and cats suffer from.

To use these, you just spray a little bit onto a food item that you’re going to give to your pet. Shortly after they eat their food, they should become calm, and any pain that they suffer from should cease.

Try to buy these from a reputable brand, though. Pets don’t have many government agencies protecting them from irresponsible manufacturers, and some manufacturers have been known to take advantage of that.

CBD Facts

You might have freaked out when we told you that CBD products are illegal in Iowa. Don’t be so quick to jump the gun. There are a lot of misconceptions about CBD, and they’re the main reasons behind some of the issues Iowa is facing.

Here are some things that might make you support your local CBD suppliers.

  • CBD helps with a lot of different issues. Anxiety, depression, and some serious psychiatric problems can all be treated with CBD.
  • CBD has no serious side-effects. You might get a headache or a little nauseous after using CBD, but there are no other side-effects that we know of. It’s a very safe chemical.
  • The federal government has already legalized it. While Iowa tries to use its own state laws against consumers, it’s a fact that the federal government has already legalized hemp-derived CBD products such as CBD oil. States do not have the right to fully ban CBD. They can make their own regulations for it, though.
  • Most police officers are uninterested in pursuing CBD retailers and consumers. The state is already trying to rewrite their laws, and the products will be fully legal by 2020. Even though you’re technically committing a crime by using or selling CBD, you’re unlikely to be punished for it.

Final Thoughts

We’ve talked about a lot of states, and a lot of those states have had some weird laws regarding CBD. However, none of them have outright banned CBD like Iowa has. In some ways, Iowa’s lawmakers are ignoring federal laws.

Luckily, you should see some changes in the earlier parts of 2020, and Iowa might just be a better place for CBD users. For now, it’s best to play it safe.