CBD Oil Prices: Are You Overpaying for CBD?
- How much does CBD oil cost?
- CBD oil prices
- How to calculate CBD prices
- How to get the best deals on CBD
CBD oil prices have started to become more competitive in recent years. With more up and coming brands popping up, this has fostered more competition and a wider range of CBD-based products including creams, capsules, gummies and others. People who never would have even considered it, are now talking about the potential benefits of CBD oil.
In this guide, we will assess the average price of cannabidiol per milligram, which will help you determine if you’re getting a good deal or not. Whether you’re vaping on CBD oil cartridges, CBD vape juice, or CBD-rich cannabis strains, we will explain why some CBD products can cost more than others. And if you’re new to the whole CBD thing, check out this full guide which covers everything you will need to know about CBD.
How much does CBD oil cost?
The best CBD products generally cost anywhere from $0.02 to $0.20 per mg CBD on average. This is based on an average assessment of the most popular CBD products from some of the top brands. For most products, the more you buy, the cheaper it tends to get. Likewise, the more CBD a product contains, the cheaper it is going to generally cost per mg. Unlike nicotine e-juice, the price of CBD oil is determined by potency rather than overall volume. In other words, you can have two equal-sized bottles of CBD oil, but the more potent one can potentially cost 2-3 times more, based on the total CBD content.
CBD prices are primarily determined by the method of production, quality of raw materials used and the overall level of potency. The better brands use organic hemp that is free of pesticides and GMOs. Quality control is another crucial factor. Most CBD is put through third party lab testing. Some companies only test for basic CBD/THC levels, whereas others test more rigorously for residual solvents, mold, pesticides etc. The more extensively tested products are going to usually cost a bit more per mg. Regardless of the cost, if your CBD has not been lab tested you may want to consider trying a more reputable CBD brand.
Try to avoid gas stations, corner stores, smoke shops and websites that don’t appear to be credible. Many vape shops now stock a variety of premium CBD liquids, possibly even some tinctures and edibles. Pharmacies and health food stores are beginning to follow suit. Just make sure you are getting pure CBD oil and not hemp seed oil, learn the difference. Cannabis dispensaries also tend to carry full spectrum CBD oil, but most of them contain higher ratios of THC to CBD, which is known to produce psychoactive effects.
CBD oil prices
The price of CBD can vary based on the type of product. We’ve done an analysis of the top brands across each of the different categories. You’ll notice that CBD vape juice and CBD tinctures tend to cost around the same price, with some level of variation. Cartridges, concentrates and CBD hemp are the most cost-effective option, whereas creams are the least, considering their higher cost per mg and lower bioavailability.
How much does CBD vape juice cost?
The better CBD vape oils generally go for anywhere from $0.20 cents to as low as $0.07 per milligram of CBD. The average price for premium CBD e-liquid is typically around $0.10 per mg.
How much do CBD oil tinctures cost?
Similar to CBD vape juice, CBD oil tinctures can range from $0.4 per mg up to $0.20 cents. On average, the higher quality CBD oils generally go for around $0.12 per mg.
How much do CBD topicals and creams cost?
CBD creams are designed for localized skin treatment and pain relief. They are not the most cost-effective option, since they come with much lower bioavailability than tinctures and vapes. CBD topicals typically go for around $0.20 to $0.30 per milligram. The average cost for a good CBD cream is around $0.25 per mg. Many of the best CBD patches tend to go for about the same price per mg, making them more cost effective due to their higher absorption rate than topical creams.
How much do CBD oil cartridges cost?
CBD oil cartridges are one of the most cost-effective options. They can go for anywhere from $0.09 to $0.18 per mg, and around $0.12 per mg on average. They are easy to administer and come with higher bioavailability compared to tinctures and creams. (Keep in mind they do require a 510 thread battery in order to use it.)
How much do CBD concentrates cost?
CBD concentrates are extremely cheap when you take into account the price per mg. The average price is generally going to be around $0.05 per mg, but it becomes even cheaper when you purchase it in bulk by the pound. If you vape CBD concentrates, that is by far the most efficient way to inhale cannabinoids directly.
How much does CBD flower cost?
How to calculate CBD prices
The best way to compare CBD prices is to use the price per mg method. Don’t worry, it sounds a lot more complicated than it really is. You’ll only need to take into account two main variables: the total amount of CBD in milligrams, and the price. Simply divide the price by the amount of CBD in milligrams to determine the price per milligram. The number of milligrams on the label represents the total amount of CBD per bottle.
Price ÷ total mg CBD = price per mg
Example: $29.99 ÷ 250 mg = $0.12 per mg
So if a bottle of CBD oil costs $29.99 and contains 250 mg of CBD (regardless of the size of the bottle), then that means you are paying roughly $0.12 per mg of CBD. This can be applied to any CBD product as long as you have those two values. Keep in mind that vaping has the highest bioavailability of all the delivery methods. This means that even if you’re paying the same price per mg, your body is actually going to absorb more of it.
To learn more about bioavailability and calculating CBD doses, check out our full guide.
If you’re buying CBD in bulk, the same formula can be used to determine the price of CBD per pound. Some manufacturers actually sell 99% pure CBD isolate powder by the pound. This is by far the most cost effective option. CBD concentrates can be used to concoct your own recipes and tinctures, or can be vaporized in a wax pen or dab rig.
How to get the best deals on CBD
Now that you know how to calculate the cost per milligram, it’s easier to compare prices. There are even some online shops like Direct CBD that conveniently display the price per mg next to all of their products, which saves a bit of time. If you’re looking for the best prices, be sure to use our coupon codes below for some of the top brands.
To sum things up, when checking for the best deals make sure to:
- Compare the prices based on the price per mg, rather than bottle size.
- The more CBD you buy at a time, the cheaper it will cost per mg.
- Vaping has the highest bioavailability and is the most cost-effective method
- Tinctures are the second most cost effective method of taking CBD.
- Use our exclusive coupons for some of the top brands like Avida, CBDistillery and Hemp Bombs.
How much should you be paying for CBD oil? In this guide we look at the average price of CBD and how to determine whether you're getting a good deal or not.
How much does CBD oil cost?
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- How much does CBD oil cost the consumer?
- What are the different types of CBD?
- Is CBD oil lab tested?
- How do you read the labels on CBD?
- Will CBD ever cost less?
Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is one of the hottest wellness trends of 2019, with products popping up in nail salons, spas, big-box retailers, and health stores throughout the U.S.
Though once illegal, the 2018 Farm Bill made industrial hemp,and thus hemp-derived CBD, legal to produce in all 50 states. And now CBD oil is popping up in such unlikely places as Bed, Bath, and Beyond.
But for curious newcomers to CBD, the price might be raising some eyebrows. A 1 ounce, or 30 milliliter, bottle of CBD oil could cost anywhere from $30 to more than $200, leaving many wondering how something so small can cost so much and vary so widely. What accounts for the discrepancies and, perhaps most importantly, how much does CBD oil really cost?
Well, that’s complicated. CBD can be expensive to produce with plenty of added costs and there are multiple formulas available. Plus, the potency of a bottle can greatly affect the price, even if it’s the same size as a cheaper bottle with less CBD overall. Here’s a primer to the different types of CBD and how much you should expect to spend.
How much does CBD oil cost the consumer?
According to Katie Stem of Peak Extracts, a cannabis product manufacturer, CBD as a bulk commodity ranges from $3 to $15 per gram, or a fraction of a cent to 1.5 cents per milligram. This could mean that a 1,000-milligram bottle of CBD tincture could contain $3 to $25 worth of CBD, but that wouldn’t account for production costs, materials, or labor.
Some companies might do all the production work in-house, but many CBD companies turn to “white labeling,” which is when a larger manufacturer makes their products for them. The CBD companies then must market and ship their products. Stem says this can cost around $25,000 to launch, plus a per-unit cost between $2.50 and $12.50.
Full-spectrum, or whole plant CBD, will contain trace amounts of THC and all compounds originally contained in the plant, such as terpenes. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
“Long story short, the range is so broad, it’s hard to make a general statement about what is a ‘reasonable’ price to pay for a CBD product,” Stem said. “That said, when examining a cost analysis from a production perspective, you look at labor, materials, packaging, labels, potency/purity testing, marketing, and shipping/distribution.
“In most other industries, the labor, materials, and profit are often divided into three equal portions. Given the exposure to this industry with regard to legal, regulatory, and testing standards, it stands to reason that the profit margin must be higher to accommodate potential risk. The markup may be closer to 400% rather than the 40% seen in many other packaged goods.”
There may also be significant markups on the retail side, as cannabis dispensaries are not allowed write-offs on their business expenses per Section 280E of the Internal Revenue Code.
Stem said that when she is personally trying to decide if a CBD product is a good deal, she goes straight to the source material. Is it grown organically? Is it grown domestically? She also looks for readily available certificates of analysis (COA), which must be issued by a licensed laboratory that tests for potency and safety.
Stem said that those products will probably cost at least $50 to $60 per 1,000-milligram bottle, which comes out to 5 cents per milligram or more.
However, for most brands Weedmaps News looked at, 5 cents seemed to be the low end, while the majority cost between 10 to 15 cents per milligram of CBD and rarely exceeded 20 cents per milligram.
A few examples, using prices found in Los Angeles:
- Ignite’s Lavender CBD Drops, 1,000 milligrams of CBD. Priced at $60, or about 6 cents per milligram.
- Topikal CBD’s Sublingual CBD Oil, 1,500 milligrams of CBD. Priced at $140, or about 9 cents per milligram.
- Icon Extracts’ CBD Tincture, 500 milligrams of CBD. Priced at $45, or about 9 cents per milligram.
- Smashed’s Homies Anxiety + CBD Capsules, 400 milligrams of CBD. Priced at $40, or about 10 cents per milligram.
- Ignite’s Lavender CBD Drops, 1,000 milligrams of CBD. Priced at $60, or about 6 cents per milligram.
- El Gallo Star Anise CBD, 500 milligrams of CBD. Priced at $70, or about 14 cents per milligram.
What are the different types of CBD?
CBD can be derived from either hemp or marijuana. Legally speaking, hemp in the United States must contain less than 0.3% THC; it is generally grown for industrial fiber and other uses. Marijuana may have various amounts of CBD and THC and is typically grown for medicinal or recreational purposes. Broadly speaking, whether CBD is extracted from hemp or marijuana, the distinctions aren’t always relevant.
CBD can be derived from either hemp or marijuana. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
“One thing I always say is that a molecule does not know its mother, so CBD is coming from cannabis or hemp, but it’s the same compound,” said Robby Flannery, Ph.D., CEO of California-based cannabis brand Dr. Robb Farms.
The difference might be more relevant when comparing whole plant CBD, which can be full-spectrum or broad-spectrum, with isolate CBD. The latter results from extracting the CBD compound in its pure form, minus other cannabinoid compounds such as terpenes, which may provide flavors, aromas, or enhanced physiological or cerebral effects.
Full-spectrum, or whole plant CBD, will contain THC and all of the compounds originally contained in the plant, such as terpenes. Broad-spectrum hemp is similar to full spectrum, except that the THC is removed.
An ongoing debate in the CBD oil industry currently focuses on whether THC or other compounds are useful. Researchers have identified a synergistic interaction between the plant’s various compounds known as the ensemble effect or entourage effect. That’s one reason some may seek out full- or broad-spectrum CBD, but there are various reasons why a person might prefer one over the other. If, for instance, you dislike the smell and/or taste of cannabis or want to avoid THC entirely, you might choose to stick to isolate.
Flannery notes that “cannabis tends to be a little more resinous, so the entourage effect and ensemble effect that you would be able to achieve [by] including some of those other cannabinoids is more profound. But if you’re just consuming an isolate product, it does not matter [which plant] it comes from.”
Many medical marijuana and CBD isolate consumers prefer an edible such as a gummy to receive their dose of cannabinoids. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Whether you end up purchasing hemp-derived or marijuana-derived CBD might actually depend more on where you live than preference. With the passage of the Farm Bill, hemp-derived CBD is legal throughout the U.S., while cannabis-derived CBD will be available only to consumers in adult-use states or to patients in states that allow medical cannabis. Cannabis-derived CBD is likely to cost a bit more because hemp is less costly to produce.
Is CBD oil lab tested?
Third-party lab testing ensures a product is safe and correctly measured. A licensed lab will make sure a product’s potency is accurate, meaning you’re actually getting the amount of CBD or THC you’re paying for, or alternatively, that the THC content is zero for those who want to avoid any possible intoxicating effects or drug-testing surprises. These tests also will analyze moisture content and screen for pesticides, mold, fungus, and residual solvents — chemicals that may remain after the extraction process.
Third-party lab testing ensures a product is safe and correctly measured. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
How do you know you’re getting a lab-tested product? If a company lists its certificates of analysis on its website and packaging, shoppers can usually be assured the product has been lab tested.
“If you are a cannabis consumer and you go to a licensed retailer, you are close to 100% certain that all of that product has been tested by a third-party lab and it passed very stringent restrictions and regulations,” Flannery said.
Testing can get pricey, especially in a state such as California, where testing regulations implemented in late 2018 increased costs as much as 40% to 55% for some manufacturers, according to MJBizDaily. Flannery estimated testing can cost a company between $100 and $400 per sample, and they may have to test several samples. Those that produce flower — from which the oil is derived — have to test incrementally, such as every 55 pounds.
“If you’re a large farm, that’s a lot of testing,” Flannery said. “I know some groups who are spending in the seven-figure range on testing on an annual basis.”
All of these costs are shouldered by the manufacturer and ultimately raise the prices overall.
How do you read the labels on CBD?
The label on any CBD product will tell you several important details. Perhaps the most obvious detail is the name of the company, which you may want to research so you can read reviews of the brand (most are available on Weedmaps) or the individual product. Or, you might want to visit the company website’s FAQ page for additional product information.
The label will also tell you how many milligrams of CBD the product contains. This number may be the total amount or how many milligrams are in each serving.
Topicals and oils usually list the total amount of CBD. Balms, lotions, and other topicals are products you’re likely rubbing into your skin and therefore, you might not be concerned about measuring out a particular dosage.
With oils and tinctures that you’ll be ingesting, you may wish to find out how much CBD is in each serving. To do that, you’ll need to determine the milligrams of CBD within the net weight of the product. So, if you have a bottle that contains 30 milliliters (about 1 fluid ounce) of liquid and 500 milligrams of CBD (divide 500 by 30), that’s about 16.6 milligrams per milliliter. It takes about 20 drops per milliliter.
If your product is an edible — chocolate, candy, etc. — or capsule, you may find that the package lists how many milligrams of CBD are in individual items. If a bottle of capsules says that each capsule contains 30 milligrams of CBD and there are 30 capsules in the bottle, that would be 900 total milligrams of CBD.
CBD oil usually comes with a dropper to allow consumers and patients to measure out their dose. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
If the product contains THC, the label will tell you that as well. It may tell you the ratio of THC to CBD, such as 18:1, which would be a particularly THC-rich product, or 1:1, which would be more balanced.
The package will also specify whether the product contains full-spectrum, whole plant, or isolate CBD, as previously mentioned. And, like any other product, the label will list what else is in it (coconut or medium-chain triglyceride oil derived from coconuts are common carrier oils), where it was made, and how it ought to be stored.
Will CBD ever cost less?
According to Flannery, yes, the price of CBD will come down, but not for a few years. “I think the primary driver behind [the cost] is just the regulatory environment that we’ve lived in for so long has limited the amount of production we can do,” he said.
Flannery noted it takes time to put together the capital expenditures and build out the infrastructure required. A new hemp farm requires a minimum of two months to produce any crop and in many places, the 2018 Farm Bill marked the first time it was legal. Plus, testing regulations are often much stricter when it comes to CBD and cannabis than to similar herbal supplements or oils.
“CBD is never going to be, in my opinion, as cheap as any off-the-shelf pharmaceutical or herbal supplements, but prices are still going to be going down,” Flannery said. That cost savings may come about, he said, when lawmakers begin to understand that cannabis is not, “the devil’s lettuce we were told it was.”
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