CBD products are so expensive because the industry is young and extra steps taken to ensure safe CBD are costly. why is cbd so expensive? is it getting cheaper? cbd is popular, we get it. in our opinion, it deserves the recognition it’s finally getting. it’s a whole trend right now, though, and with that CBD is a growing phenomenon, with sales tripling in the last three years. But manufacturers are forbidden to make medical claims on its effectiveness.
Why Is CBD So Expensive?
Cannabidiol (CBD) products are expensive because quality and safety control come with an added price. It is crucial to ensure that you know what is in your CBD products and buying pricier, better quality, third-party tested products is the way to do that.
Download Free Guide to CBD
Why Is CBD so Expensive?
CBD products can be expensive, but they may look more costly than they are. You have to keep in mind that these products usually come in a very concentrated form, so you’ll be able to get more out of them than you think. CBD dosing is also in small quantities, starting from as little as 10-20 milligrams (mg), so you will not be using much of it at once.
The higher price that comes with CBD oil also guarantees that you are buying a product of high quality. Cheaper CBD products may be of lower concentration, contain undisclosed ingredients like synthetic CBD, or even carry the incorrect amount of certain ingredients, such as THC.
CBD products are characterized by low tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) levels of less than 0.3%. This allows people to legally take cannabinoid products for the potential therapeutic benefits without the intoxicating effects of THC.
Taking a CBD product that, without your knowledge, is high in THC could have legal implications depending on where you live, as products containing more than 0.3% THC are not legalized or decriminalized in many states.
Factors That Influence CBD Product Prices
The quality of a CBD product refers to how pure it is or how strong it is. Higher quality products will be more natural, concentrated, and expensive. The higher quality product will cost you more, but you can get more doses out of it.
It can be hard to know what ingredients are in a CBD product — what is listed on the label is not always what is in the bottle. This is because there is very little regulation around CBD products in the United States.
The higher price point for some CBD products means that you are paying to be able to trust the listed ingredients. This is important for a few reasons:
- Trusting the CBD content: More concentrated products are worth the money, but you want to ensure that the product contains the amount of CBD it claims on the label. Otherwise, it will not be worth your money. Some companies reduce their costs by diluting their products with cheaper ingredients.
- Ensure it does not contain THC: THC is the psychoactive compound found in high quantities in marijuana that makes you “high.” As mentioned before, high levels of THC can be illegal in certain states.
- Ensure it does not contain synthetic CBD: Most good quality CBD products are made naturally by extracting the CBD from the flowers and leaves of hemp plants. However, with no regulations, there is no way to know that these synthetic compounds are safe, so it is better to avoid them.
This is product testing by independent third-party organizations to test the claims made by brands about what is in their CBD products. They test for things like CBD content, THC content, and the presence of any harmful ingredients.
These organizations remain independent and neutral in the CBD industry so consumers can trust their analysis more than first-party testing. CBD companies pay to have their products third-party tested at an added cost to ensure they are high quality, and this further explains why better-quality CBD products are more expensive.
Legal Red Tape
It was not until the 2018 Farm Bill that it became legal to grow and produce hemp products across the U.S. This means that the industry is young, and there has not been enough time to create well-established hemp farms, further contributing to the higher price points.
Tips for Making CBD Products Last Longer
Use the Lowest Dose Possible
An effective dose of CBD looks different for everybody. The general advice is to start low at 20 mg per day and build up as needed until you find the dose that gives you the effects you are looking for.
To make CBD products more cost-effective, it is essential not to take more than the dose you have determined to be enough. If you take more than you need, it starts to get expensive. If you are in a state with legalized medical marijuana, using low doses of THC can also reduce the amount of CBD you may require, helping reduce expenses overall.
Take with Fat or Oil
Ingesting oil or a high-fat meal will increase the amount of CBD available for the body to use by acting as an “oil vehicle.” Taking oral CBD products can be complicated because most of the CBD gets metabolized before reaching your bloodstream, reducing its effects. An “oil vehicle” will protect the CBD from metabolism and increase the amount that reaches your bloodstream.
Increasing the effectiveness of your CBD product will mean you can take a lower dose, which will make the product last longer.
The Bottom Line
Yes, CBD products can be expensive, but you tend to be paying for a higher quality product. Choosing cheaper options comes with added risks and uncertainties about what the product contains and can be a false economy as they may not have the amount of CBD the label says it does.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will CBD prices go down?
The CBD industry is young, having really only taken off after the 2018 Farm Bill. Because of this, many hemp farms are still being established. Over time, you may see a drop in the price of CBD products as hemp becomes more accessible.
Is CBD oil overpriced?
That, in part, can only be answered based on whether it works as well as you need it to. The science is not conclusive on the potential therapeutic benefits of CBD, but many people believe that it works. Considering the potential risks of buying cheaper CBD products, no, safe, clean, high-quality CBD oil is not overpriced.
why is cbd so expensive? is it getting cheaper?
cbd is popular, we get it. in our opinion, it deserves the recognition it’s finally getting. it’s a whole trend right now, though, and with that comes an expensive price tag. but for real, why is cbd so dang expensive? and is it going to get cheaper anytime soon?
the truth is, cbd oil is not as expensive as the biggest players in the industry want you to think it is. because cbd is so versatile and the cbd industry is booming, demand for the product is at an all-time high and companies of all kinds are taking full advantage of the hype.
surely, there must be some reason why legit cbd is so expensive. after all, higher quality vitamins and supplements usually cost more than their cheaper counterparts. the same goes for organic produce in a lot of cases. since cbd is a natural health product, it would make sense for the same logic to follow. however, we’ve found that’s not the case, even though prices across the entire cbd world are reflecting said logic.
dispelling the myths of expensive cbd
we think cbd is too expensive, period. of course there are your cheapo gas station cbd products and fly-by-night companies who make no claim to their product’s potency or cleanliness of ingredients, and sure, these companies can offer “cbd products” for a low price. but we trust that if you’re reading this, you probably care enough about your body to not even consider putting that garbage in it. we also trust that we’re not alone in thinking that high quality cbd from reputable sources is quite costly. after all, there are tinctures out there that can run you $100, $200, or even more!
a quick google search using this article’s very title will return heaps of information as to why cbd is so expensive. it should come at no surprise that many cbd companies are putting out information as to why cbd is expensive – it fulfills their narrative and continues to allow them to charge top dollar for their product. hey, we get it. there’s something to be said about charging a premium for a high-quality product or service that people are willing to pay for (again, we’re talking reputable sources only here, not those shady ones). but, does it have to be that way? why can’t the best quality cbd oil be both accessible and affordable to all?
to us, any answer to that question sounds more like an excuse. and there are excuses along every step of the supply chain, so let’s get started.
growing – the cannabis plant has many compounds found within it, with the two primary ones being thc and cbd. cannabis can be bred for different genetic traits (with regards to thc, you can think of different strains and their varied effects as an example of this), and thc percentage happens to be the one that is concerned for legal classifications of the plant. any cannabis with more than .3% thc is called “marijuana,” while everything below .3% is called hemp.
but in both “hemp” and “marijuana,” different strains of cannabis can be cultivated for high cbd levels. there is an argument that growing cannabis specifically for high levels of cbd is more expensive , and that is simply untrue. yes, there is a skill to growing, but that alone cannot explain the high price of cbd. a favorable legality landscape for cannabis as a whole will allow for more people to have access to cannabis as well as the ability to grow it. as more people are able to grow high-quality, cbd-rich hemp, the prices will go down accordingly. in other words, the forces of supply and demand will play a role as access to cannabis increases nationwide. this brings us to our next aspect.
legality and regulation – “marijuana” was effectively made illegal in the 1930s and the stigma associated with it throughout all of our lives is undeniable. this sent the plant to the black market, where prices were set high. the last 15 years have seen prices on medical cannabis – and now recreational cannabis – continue to fall as access to the product has expanded. for example, the same eighth we found at a dispensary for $60 in 2007 can now be acquired for roughly half that price.
today, that price is still being paid for in many ways with cannabis as a whole. after all, it was only in 2018 that the production of hemp was legalized. with that, cbd became legal nationwide as well. we are still in such early stages of this beautiful situation (yes, we’re biased lol), and there are a lot of moving parts and kinks to be worked out. in the meantime, the price is being passed on to the end-user.
the end-user is also slammed with other regulatory costs. despite being legal, there is tremendous governmental oversight over the growth of cannabis. this results in growers having to pay licensing fees in order to stay within the confines of the law. from there, the end product is also taxed higher than many other crops (this also contributes to lower supply, which we mentioned in the section on growing). farmers must stay in business, so that cost is conveniently passed down to the consumer at whatever arbitrary profit margin they are subjected to.
extraction, ingredients, and testing: a lot of companies are being cryptic at best, if not intentionally deceitful when it comes to these three areas. but knowledge is power, and we did our homework so we have some to share with you. let’s address each point, one at a time.
extraction: what method are they using to extract their cbd? co2 extraction is undeniably expensive (and worth it, so make sure your cbd is extracted in this manner!), but there are products out there using ethanol extraction or simply making infusions in order to cut corners (to the cost and final product), while still charging an arm and a leg.
what are you doing to lower the price of cbd?
another big component to price is how many times a product exchanges hands between the farm and you having it in your home. we think it’s important to have your finished product be as close to the source as possible throughout the entire process, and we also think it’s just as important to support farmers who share this belief. as such, we’ve gone the extra mile to develop relationships with small, organic and sustainable hemp farms in oregon, and that, in turn, allows us to work directly with them and know the source of where our hemp comes from.
their medicinal hemp genetics are grown to produce robust cannabinoid and terpene profiles, and we buy raw hemp extract directly from these farmers in order to cut out any middlemen that would result in further price increases. we also think it’s important to connect with you, the consumer, in a personal manner. this is why we have an active voice online and in the community, and we look to sell directly to you in order to remove any third-party retail markup from the price you end up paying.
perhaps the biggest thing we are doing to lower the price of cbd, however, is simply leading by example! as we’ve mentioned, there are “excuses” that companies can make for selling cbd oil at a prime price point. but at the end of the day that’s all they are, excuses. we keep coming back to the idea that everybody is selling cbd at an inflated price simply because everyone else is doing it . so we’ve slashed our already-low prices even further across the board, bringing our price per mg of cbd to as little as four cents per bottle.
this price is available to everybody, every day, because affordable access to cbd is in our dna. you can buy one bottle for that price – no need to increase your order like other companies do to drive the price down. we already value you plenty; we don’t need to make you buy more product to prove that value. that’s backwards thinking – it should be up to us to provide value to YOU, and we love our products and are certain you will as well. it’s also why we operate as transparently as possible – we have nothing to hide!
lastly, everything with zadaka’s name on it is done with the utmost integrity. this means we’ve found a way to bring you the highest quality, organic cbd we can find at the lowest prices possible. our products check all the boxes with regards to clean, lab-tested, co2 extracted, organic ingredients. and we’ve found a way to deliver that product to you at a price that is actually affordable and sustainable. if we can do it, why can’t everyone else?
with that, we ask you: why is cbd so expensive? hopefully you now understand it really isn’t as expensive as it is made out to be. you can also sign up for our newsletter below and receive a first-time discount and make sure you’re kept in the loop for future deals and other nice things. 🙂
What is CBD oil, and why is it so expensive?
Email Link icon An image of a chain link. It symobilizes a website link url.
is a new and rapidly growing phenomenon, with sales tripling in the last three years.
- Manufacturers are unauthorized to make medical claims about the effectiveness of CBD oil.
- 62% of CBD products tested in the UK didn’t contain the cannabidiol content promised on the label.
Sign up for our newsletter to receive our top stories based on your reading preferences — delivered daily to your inbox.
Following is a transcript of the video.
Narrator: Depending on who you ask, CBD oil can be a miracle cure, a snake-oil placebo, or something vague in between. This poorly regulated industry, which has boomed over the last three years, is a minefield for newcomers. Considering that manufacturers are unauthorized to make medical claims, how can one CBD oil cost $50, while another of the same volume costs $390? And are premium CBD oils justified for being so expensive?
Firstly, what is CBD?
Dani Gordon: CBD stands for cannabidiol. That’s the chemical name for one of the chemicals in the cannabis plant. The CBD oil that you’re seeing on shelves that consumers can buy without a prescription is actually from low-THC, the stuff that makes you high, varieties of the cannabis plant.
Narrator: CBD is a new and rapidly growing phenomenon, with sales tripling in the last three years. But the line between what consumers are using it for and what manufacturers can say to attract them is increasingly blurred.
Gordon: It can be used for a variety of purposes, things like inflammation, anxiety, stress, and it can also be used just to support general wellness. Now, the differentiating criteria between a medicine and a supplement is you cannot make a claim that it treats or cures a specific medically diagnosed disease. And that’s really important for companies to understand, because they can get their products pulled off the shelves, and they can also potentially sometimes unintentionally mislead consumers.
Narrator: But in the age of anxiety, it’s no surprise that CBD has become a hot ticket for manufacturers, who infuse all sorts of products with cannabidiol, shrewdly tapping into its perceived wellness benefits and bumping up the price of otherwise standard items, like gummies, sportswear, tampons, and even dog treats. But how do we assess the value of CBD oil, which is actually produced in two different ways?
Gordon: A full- or broad-spectrum product is made from the whole plant extract. They take the flower and they process it, and they come up with an extract that not only has CBD, but it has other plant chemicals, other cannabinoids, other terpenoids, other things in the plant that work together in this, what’s called this herbal synergy, this entourage effect. And what you get is greater than the sum of its parts.
Narrator: But some manufacturers process the extract even further into CBD isolate, a substance devoid of all other plant chemicals and labeled as “pure CBD.” But this isolate, which often features in expensive products, is generally considered to be less effective and cheaper to make.
Gordon: Some brands and some companies will put CBD isolate into a product and then brand it as a premium product, even though the cost of actually making it, because the cost of the isolate, is quite a lot lower than the cost of a full- or broad-spectrum CBD.
Narrator: But because of lax regulations in the industry, this fundamental difference in CBD oils is often disguised by manufacturers. The front of this premium $300 bottle, for example, does not display that it is, in fact, made from isolate.
Gordon: Sometimes you have to dig into the nitty-gritty of the ingredients. And sometimes you even have to, you might have to call the company and see what they’ve actually used. But in general, the labeling criteria are becoming a little bit stricter, so more and more consumers will be able to know what is a CBD isolate product and what comes from a full- or broad-spectrum source.
Narrator: These products can also be measured by the amount of cannabidiol in each bottle.
Gordon: What you really need to look for is the number of milligrams in the entire bottle, and then the number of milligrams of CBD per dose. And that’s really gonna tell you the bang for buck.
Narrator: But even high-dosage, full-spectrum CBD doesn’t have the approval from the Food and Drug Administration. The FDA says it “recognizes the significant public interest in cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds, particularly CBD. However, there are many unanswered questions about the science, safety, and quality of products containing CBD.”
More worryingly, lab tests conducted by the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis found that 62% of CBD products tested in the UK didn’t contain the cannabidiol content promised on the label. One product actually contained no CBD whatsoever.
CBD is shrouded in mystery and confusion for the consumer. On the one hand, a 2018 cross-sectional study of CBD users found that almost 62% “reported using CBD to treat a medical condition,” stating that CBD has “broad therapeutic value. But on the other hand, manufacturers cannot use the research data to make medical claims, leaving spokespeople in the unenviable position of having to promote their products to a certain demographic while avoiding endorsing the public’s perception of CBD.
Brett Heaps: So, what we’re not allowed to do with our products is make any medicinal claims, ’cause they’re not medical products. All our products that we sell are wellness products to improve sleeps and moods. We see CBD as a homeostasis product, which balances the levels in your body to get you into a normal state and balanced mind.
Narrator: Thankfully, despite the misconceptions, no matter what you use it for, there is a way to get a snapshot of the quality of CBD oil.
Gordon: You wanna look for a certificate of analysis. That means that that is a third-party-tested lab report. They test their product to make sure that it’s not contaminated, make sure it doesn’t have accidental THC levels above the allowed limit. Make sure it doesn’t have heavy metals in it. Make sure there’s no microbials, so, bacteria or fungus that can grow in these plants. No herbicides, pesticides, things you don’t want in it.
Narrator: So, why is it so expensive? The cost of producing CBD oil isn’t particularly high in relation to other large-scale crops. But there appears to be a premium on all cannabidiol, as revealed in this comparison of full-spec CBD, which shows that its prices grow pretty uniformly, according to the price per milligram in each bottle. With any wellness product with a global hype, high demand means high prices. Statistics show that sales of CBD will likely reach $1.8 billion in the next two years. But without regulation, medical research, and clear consumer knowledge, the human value of CBD oil will, for now, remain a matter of opinion.