Eating Hemp: It’s Not Just Another Plant
Have you noticed more products in your local supermarket or health food store have hemp in them? Take note, just because hemp products are available to the public does not mean you, as an active duty Service member, reservist or Guardsman, can eat them.
You may have seen things like hemp seeds, oil or milk, or noticed hemp as an ingredient in protein powders, supplements and even yogurts. Although hemp has been legal and available in U.S. stores since 2018, the DOD policy [PDF 2MB]** makes eating hemp, or using products made from hemp or products that contain components of hemp (such as hemp seed oil) prohibited for Service members. Durable goods like rope or clothing, however, are not included in this policy and are okay to use.
Stores or online retailers may offer a military discount on hemp products, but that does not mean you should buy it or try it. Make sure you understand the DOD policy on hemp and learn what to look for to avoid eating or using products that may contain it. If you’re not sure if something contains hemp, don’t take the risk.
Eye it before you buy it: where to look for hemp
Not all foods and products containing hemp are labeled. Before you purchase a product, check the ingredients closely. Some language to look out for includes:
- Hemp seeds or oil
You are responsible for your own decisions and career. Review product labels and product information before buying products so that you don’t put yourself at risk.
*The DOD order/regulation on hemp products does not include FDA-approved cannabinoid drugs for which a Service member has a valid prescription.
** This PDF document was published by the Department of Defense Office of the Under Secretary of Defense; we are not responsible for content contained therein.