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Getting Started: CBD vs THC

Getting Started: CBD vs THC

While recreational and medical cannabis consumers alike find many reasons to enjoy themselves, two particular compounds are most often at the center of their use: cannabidiol, or CBD, and tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. Both compounds affect the brain, but they do so in two very different ways. 

As such, a cannabis user may find that they prefer one over the other, even if many enjoy both. If you are looking to develop a cannabis business, you may be weighing the pros and cons of selling either THC or CBD products, depending on where you plan on opening your business. To kick things off, let's go over some basics to get you started. 

How Do They Differ?

Both CBD and THC have the same root term, cannabidiol, despite being two different compounds. This simply cbdmeans that they affect the cannabinoid receptors within your brain, much like other chemicals like alcohol, nicotine, or adrenaline affect your neuroreceptors and affect your perception of reality. However, CBD affects your brain in very different ways than THC: unlike THC, it produces no "high", and a person can safely drive or operate machinery without advanced risk of danger. 

CBD does affect a number of your body parts, however, ranging from pain levels to alertness, which is why it is commonly used as a medical treatment for pain management or insomnia. Likewise, CBD has a notable calming effect and is often used to soothe anxiety in both humans and pets. 

THC, by contrast, is what we usually consider the narcotic compound in marijuana, responsible for the psychological effects. THC makes a user feel euphoric, which is why high-THC strains of marijuana are often the best-selling strains at recreational cannabis dispensaries. Recreational cannabis usually has a THC percentage of around 20%, but concentrated cannabis products (like waxes or some edibles) may have double or even triple that amount.

Growing Pains

Generally speaking, the difference in CBD and THC in cannabis comes down to one very specific factor—the psychoactive effects. Not many may know that this designation is primarily based on the difference between THC (prevalent in marijuana, absent in hemp) and CBD (prevalent in hemp, less common in marijuana). Since both hemp and marijuana are relatively easy to grow, a business considering selling one or both of their products has many options available to them in terms of vendors and products. Even so, the legality of growing and selling marijuana is complex and varies from state-to-state; however, there are usually fewer laws regarding the growth of hemp for CBD products than there are for marijuana, as CBD is legal federally thanks to The Farm Bill. 

The Reality of Buying and Selling

thcEach state has its own laws about cannabis production and consumption, but most states also have specific laws about the THC levels that a dispensary can or cannot legally sell. For example, Texas has strict penalties against recreational cannabis, but permits medical cannabis with very low (>1%) levels of THC. States with legal recreational cannabis, like Colorado, may not have caps on the levels of THC that persons can possess, but may put limits on the amount of THC in cannabis that is specifically sold as medical, rather than recreational.

Starting a CBD-specific business that only sells cannabidiol products requires a business owner to take several particular steps, despite the legality. The FDA has particular laws based on the selling of CBD products, since it is considered a commercial product for medical use. However, not all regulations are currently in place, meaning that some CBD businesses are in a murky area without clear boundaries. A CBD business starting up should be cognizant of these gaps and prepare their business for eventual change.

Likewise, it can be hard to market and sell your product. Some advertisers do not allow the marketing of CBD (or other cannabis products) on everything from social media platforms to billboards. Furthermore, dispensary owners must comply with medical laws regarding what their products can and cannot suggest as a treatment. As with many other businesses in the cannabis industry, creating customer loyalty goes a long way towards success or failure.

Building The Foundation of a Business in the Cannabis Industry

No matter if you're looking to start a business that sells CBD products, THC products, or both—getting started cancannabis business seem overwhelming. As you weigh your options, there are some other areas you should be looking into as you begin. 

  • A Business License: This application comes with a lot more requirements than most fledgling business owners know. Understanding the basic requirements, and the unique challenges posed to you as a cannabis business can help you be successful in the long run. 
  • Taxes: Especially in the case of businesses selling THC products, federal illegality creates some interesting situations when it comes to tax time. Be sure to brush up on the basic tax code as you begin. 
  • Funding: Starting your business often comes with a need for funding to get you started or help you grow. Unfortunately, the cannabis industry doesn't have it as easy as other types of businesses when it comes to getting the money we need. That's why it's important to seek out professionals that can help you get that funding as you're getting started. 

CBD, THC, and the Future of Our Industry

CBD, like the cannabis industry at large, represents a key growth opportunity for a huge market that prospective owners should be keen to invest in. Likewise, as more states legalize medical, recreational, or both, demand for this particular substance will only grow. No matter if you're CBD-based or THC-based, a cannabis business that positions itself intelligently to create high-quality products will be best prepared for dynamic growth, despite the many obstacles in the way. The future is bright for our industry. 

If you are interested in the cannabis business but are concerned with the key issue of financing, CannaBusiness Financing can help you acquire the cash you need to make your dreams a reality. You can get pre-approved in as little as 48 hours! 

Posted by Canna Business Team



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In an industry that is constantly evolving, Canna Business Financing provides business owners with a reliable source to gather the most up-to-date information. From resources to fund the growth of your business to insights on best practices to scale, look no further!

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