If you’ve done some research into CBD oil and looked at buying it, you may have come across a wide range of international CBD products online that appear much cheaper than anything you find in New Zealand and there are a few reasons for this. As of April 1st 2020, New Zealand’s definition of a CBD product remains ill-advised.
CBD oil is extracted from hemp plants which by definition contain little to no THC. In its natural form, CBD rich hemp oil contains a CBD:THC ratio of approximately 30:1, or 30 parts CBD, 1 part THC. This unprocessed natural oil accounts for the majority of CBD products available around the world and is often labelled “Full Spectrum” CBD Oil or “Full Spectrum” Hemp Oil, referring to the full spectrum of naturally occurring cannabinoids and terpenes found in the hemp plant.
Unlike global trends, New Zealand has defined a CBD product as one with a CBD:THC ratio greater than 50:1. As this does not occur naturally, any top-quality CBD rich hemp oil has to be processed and stripped of its terpenes and supporting cannabinoids in order to remove the minuscule levels of THC. Not only does this add to the cost of the final product, but it removes the synergistic health benefits of the terpenes and cannabinoids that are naturally present in the hemp plant. You’ll see this version of CBD labelled as “Broad Spectrum”, the best we can get in New Zealand right now.
Costs of CBD in New Zealand
Global market prices have a standard full spectrum 1500mg CBD bottle around in and around $170 NZD ($100 USD). The equivalent in New Zealand ranges anywhere between $200-$500 depending on the pharmacy or doctor mark up. On top of the cost of the oil, you’re also looking at a doctors fee for the consultation and prescription which again could range anywhere between $100-300 depending on the length of the consultation. As there is no open competitive market, we’ve had reports of some pharmacies are getting away with tripling the price as supply is so limited.
The new Medical Cannabis Scheme introduced this year has come with a range of licences and exorbitant fees for those wishing to produce or import anything related to medical cannabis. Until a domestic market is fully functional, be prepared to pay more for CBD products.
All up, best-case scenario right now is around $300 to obtain 1500mg of CBD which would last 1-3 months depending on what is being treated, how long you’ve been on CBD oil for and the size of the person being treated.
Watch Out for CBD Oil Scams
There are some misleading businesses selling hemp seed oil as “cannabinoid-rich”, “full-spectrum” hemp oil. This is NOT CBD oil. If it does not say CBD oil, chances are it is not CBD oil. If it is CBD oil, they are legally not allowed to sell online.
Hemp seed products are relatively cheap, while CBD-rich hemp oil from the bud of the hemp plant, is expensive. Hemp seed products are fantastic in their own right, just don’t pay $100 for a 30ml tincture when you could get more than a litre for that price.