Confusion about the difference between hemp and cannabis oil has spiked recently due to the increase and variety of cannabis-based products available on the market. Variety is a great thing since every individual requires different concentrations and methods of delivery. But if you are new to cannabis products, it can difficult to know what is what.

In this article, we break down the differences between hemp oil (also known as hemp seed oil) and cannabis or CBD oil.

Hemp and Cannabis: Is there any difference?

When trying to wrap your head around the differences between hemp and marijuana, it is important, to begin with this simple fact: both hemp and marijuana come from the same species of plant.

A Practical and Natural Taxonomy for Cannabis” explains it since 1976:

“Both hemp varieties and marijuana varieties are of the same genus, Cannabis, and the same species, Cannabis sativa. Further, there are countless varieties that fall into further classifications within the species Cannabis Sativa.”

The main difference, especially regarding the oils, is in a number of cannabinoids; THC and CBD, that they contain.

There are close to four hundred natural compounds in both marijuana and hemp, understanding the two that stand out the most: tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) is the key to understanding hemp oil and cannabis oil. THC is the cannabinoid that is responsible for giving a high or ‘stoned’ feeling. CBD, on the other hand, is not psychoactive and has attracted a lot of attention from researchers and experts.

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Hemp Seed Oil

Hemp seed oil is a hemp extract taken from the seeds of the plant. Industrial hemp is the only plant used for this type of hemp oil. The seeds of the hemp plant can be cold pressed peeled and unpeeled (preferably cold), to create a delicious oil.

There are no cannabinoids such as THC or CBD present in the oil since hemp seeds are not psychoactive. Hemp oil is legal in most countries and can be found in food markets, together with more common types of oil, like olive oil.

Hemp seeds oil is known for its great taste and for the high values of unsaturated fats, such as Omega 3 and Omega 6. It can be used in many different applications such as Lotions or soaps, a base for plastics, instead of petroleum and eco-friendly paints.

Cannabis Oil

Cannabis oil is made by extracting the resin of the female cannabis plant, for example with a solvent. After the resin is dissolved in the solvent, the solvent is evaporated to leave the concentrated extract behind. What is left is an extract with THC and/or CBD, that can be blended with hemp seeds oil, olive oil or other types of oil to facilitate ingestion.


CBD-Rich Oil is a specific oil that contains CBD and doesn’t contain THC.
CBD-Rich oil is obtained via extraction made from cannabis flowers, most of the times from hemp strains rich in CBD. Then this extract can be mixed with hemp seeds oil, olive oil or other types of oil to facilitate ingestion. These CBD-Rich oil products are non-psychoactive.

hemp oilCBD E-liquids

CBD e-liquids are made for a vaporiser or electronic cigarette. Usually, hemp extract or pure CBD is mixed with a classic e-liquid base called PG/VG. The e-liquids are inserted into a cartridge or atomiser for electronic cigarette.

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Not all hemp and CBD products are the same. It can be a potent and powerful product but poorly manufactured hemp CBD products can either contain dangerous chemicals, or ingredients different than those listed on the label. The FDA are aware of the confusion regarding CBD products and made a statement on their website:

“FDA has tested those products and, in some of them, did not detect any CBD. It is important to note that these products are not approved by FDA for the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of any disease, and often they do not even contain the ingredients found on the label. Consumers should beware purchasing and using any such products.”

With so all the contradicting information available online, it is important for consumers to do their own research from trusted sources.

At Harmony, we are always happy to answer any questions and ensure that our valued clientele can purchase the products that are right for their individual needs. Contact us if you wish to receive our certificate of analysis!

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