Let's face it — CBD is expensive. If you've spent any time shopping around for CBD oil products, you'll notice that the price ranges are all over the map. How can one supplement have such varying price ranges?
For many people, the price tag plays a massive factor in their purchasing decisions.
The thing is, a highly prevalent problem in this market is that there's a lack of regulation. Gimmicky, arguably useless products are making it onto the shelves. These brands are looking to cash in on the growing CBD trend with budget oils, making it difficult to discern the good products from the bad.
So what exactly goes into pricing CBD oil? Why do the prices vary so wildly? And how do you make sure you're buying an effective CBD oil within your budget? We'll get into all of this and more right here.
What Is CBD?
CBD is short for cannabidiol. It's the primary active ingredient harvested from cannabis hemp crops, but it won't get you high.
CBD, THC, other cannabinoids, and terpenes are concentrated in the resin, which looks like hair-like crystal trichomes sprinkled all over the plant's flowers, stems, and leaves.
Hemp extracts have gained incredible popularity worldwide for their long list of suggested health benefits from supporting a healthy immune response, mood, a good night's rest, and so much more.
With so much money to be made in this industry, CBD brands offer innovative ways to use CBD to support health and wellness. Aside from the typical CBD oils and CBD capsules, you can find CBD in anything from CBD gummies, CBD lotion, CBD vape tanks, and even CBD mints.
How Much Does CBD Oil Cost?
Let's be honest, CBD supplements tend to be more expensive than other health supplements on the market. The average price of CBD oils costs anywhere from $30–$80 for a 1oz bottle containing 500MG of CBD — and the price only goes up from here with more high potency CBD oils.
We've even come across a CBD isolate oil (1oz) with 2500MG of CBD priced at $42.
How To Determine The Cost Per MG Of Your CBD Oil
It can be challenging to compare the value across different brands for the same product. A helpful place to start is determining the cost per mg of CBD contained in the formula.For example, let's say you're looking at a 1oz bottle of CBD tincture that contains 1000MG of CBD that's priced at $50.
You'll take the price divided by the MG of CBD contained: 50/1000 = 0.05. So, the cost per MG of CBD for this particular product is $0.05. This is a highly cost-effective CBD product when looking at it on this very surface level.
Of course, this doesn't consider the other factors that go into pricing CBD oils (we'll get into this later). Still, calculating this cost per MG of CBD is a fairly reasonable starting point to comparing the cost of products from one brand to the next.
This metric shows that CBD oils on the market range anywhere from $0.05 – $0.20/MG of CBD or more.
CBD Oil Price Chart
You might be looking at the table and thinking, why is CBD oil so expensive? And why are there such wildly varying price points for virtually the same product?
We'll dive into some of the factors that affect CBD oil price. We recommend taking the cost per mg of CBD and making sure that the brand checks off the boxes for what makes a quality CBD oil.
Hemp farming itself is labor-intensive. Farmers need to make sure their hemp crops don't end up with more than 0.3% THC by weight, or they can't use it.
Suppose the plant expresses more THC than 0.3%. In that case, it's considered a marijuana plant, and it must be destroyed because it's federally illegal.
To add to this, not all hemp crops are the same. Brands will invest in selectively engineered hemp strains that contain specific concentrations of cannabinoids and terpenes to yield a particular effect profile.
Where your hemp comes from is also very important. Organic hemp crops will cost more than non-organic farms because of the cost of licensing organic farms and the labor involved.
When shopping for a CBD oil, see that the brand can pinpoint precisely where their hemp comes from and how they process it. This shows that the company has a certain level of control over its production.
CBD oils tend to cost more than your average health supplement because of how CBD oil is made. The amount of labor and equipment is needed to farm hemp crops and extract and refine the crude CBD oil is quite intensive.
Most CBD extracts are made either using supercritical CO2 or ethanol extraction. These methods produce high-grade hemp extracts, but the machines and materials required to do this are costly. One supercritical CO2 machine can cost upwards of $149,000.
Most states require a state-licensed facility to ensure that safety standards for employees are met, and looking for weighty certifications for GMP certified CBD also helps.
How much CBD is in the product will affect its price point.
Generally, the more CBD in the oil, the stronger it will be, and it'll cost more. However, when you break down the cost per MG of higher potency bottles of the same brand, it becomes more cost-effective.
This also means that you need fewer drops of CBD oil to reach your desired dose, making your product last longer too.
The extract type may also influence the price of your CBD oil.
Full spectrum CBD oils maintain as much of the beneficial active compounds in hemp. Over 100 cannabinoids, including CBD plus terpenes, contribute to the entourage effect, enhancing the benefits and potency of your CBD oil. Full spectrum CBD or whole hemp extracts tend to cost more because it requires careful and precise extraction methods to preserve temperature-sensitive compounds.
CBD isolate only has one compound — CBD. It's generally cheaper to purchase CBD isolate in bulk because it's much easier for manufacturers to standardize their products. They only need to pay attention to one ingredient, CBD.
The benefit of isolate products is that they guarantee there's no THC. However, they also tend to be weaker than full spectrum extracts.
Broad Spectrum extracts contain all of the beneficial cannabinoids, but is specially filtered to contain zero THC. Broad Spectrum is a far more rare extract than full spectrum and isolate, but it's becoming more popular in the CBD crowds for people who want a full spectrum of benefits but don't want CBD oil without THC.
CBD oil or tincture is very rarely pure CBD extract.
CBD oils are a mixture of CBD extract and a carrier oil (hemp seed oil or coconut oil) to make the compounds more bioavailable. Bioavailability refers to how quickly it absorbs into your system.
Cannabinoids are fat-soluble compounds, which means it dissolves well in oils and alcohols, and it's easier for your gut to absorb. The carrier oil functions to deliver more of the active compound and maintain the cannabinoids and terpenes freshness, as oils have a slow oxidation rate.
Other ingredients can also play an important factor in pricing, such as added essential oils, vitamins, or other compounds that can improve the product's intended use.
Quality Control & Safety
CBD oil cost doesn't always reflect quality.
Because the CBD industry is so new, many companies on the market fall through the cracks selling sub-par or even dangerous CBD oils.
We recommend only buying products from brands that undergo independent lab testing. These lab reports aren't mandatory, but they ensure the extracts reflect the labeled CBD concentration, contain legal THC levels, and are free from harmful contaminants (solvents, heavy metals, pesticides, bacteria).
Quality control goes beyond safe manufacturing practices and third-party lab testing. It can also focus on consumer education on how to use products responsibly. Brands that invest in educational content (blog posts and videos) to inform their customers are likely the same brands that take pride in their products' quality.
Just because a brand sells their CBD oil on the more affordable end of the pricing spectrum doesn't always mean they've foregone quality measures.
Larger CBD companies benefit from reduced bulk pricing for supplies that they can pass the savings onto their customers and have a competitive edge on the market.
You'll find that small-batch brands tend to price their CBD products on the higher end because their sales scale doesn't grant them access to bulk pricing.
What's The Reasonable Retail Price Of CBD Per Mg?
Other costs involved with pricing CBD products include licensing, marketing, packaging shipping, distribution, and staffing in an incredibly competitive market.
A reasonable price for CBD oils ranges anywhere from $0.05 – $0.20 per MG as long as the company can justify their products' costs. For example, you can look at two bottles of 1000MG CBD oils priced at $50.00 and think, "well, they're both priced at $0.05 per MG of CBD."
However, when you look into the company practices and the products themselves, you'll see that one stands out for its value over the other.
White Label CBD Products
The main grievance in this industry is a lack of transparency. A lot of the unspecified or unknowns from a brand are likely due to not having more control over their production process.
White-labelling is a common practice in the CBD industry. This doesn't necessarily have to be a bad thing as long as the white label manufacturer has strict quality standards. A white label manufacturer will produce a mass amount of product without a label. Entrepreneurs can then come in, and re-market and brand the finished product as their own.
If there's not enough information on the website about the source or if it lacks third-party testing to ensure the product's quality and safety, we say "skip it". There are plenty of other CBD brands on the market that put in the hard work producing a quality product.
Here are the hallmarks of a reputable brand:
- Sources a clean and responsible hemp source
- Reviews from customers available on the site
- Use clean extraction methods
- Value quality assurance and safety
- Produce a wide range of top-notch products at a value to their customers
Is CBD Oil Worth The Cost?
For many people who want a natural and gentle way to support a healthy lifestyle, they'll say CBD oil is worth the price. The potential health benefits of a quality CBD oil include:
- Supporting a calm and relaxed mood 
- Supporting a normal recovery response and athletic performance 
- Supporting a good night's sleep 
- Supporting focus 
- Supporting healthy joint mobility 
- Supporting a healthy inflammation 
Will The Price Of CBD Oil Ever Go Down?
As more companies come into the CBD space and consumers become more educated in CBD use, there may be a chance that the trend in pricing will go down. However, that likely isn't going to happen in the next couple of years.
As of right now, the demand for CBD continues to skyrocket as cannabis-based products become more mainstream in the health and wellness space.
The Takeaway: How Much CBD Oil Cost?
As you can see, many, many factors go into pricing a CBD oil. But just because a CBD oil is priced on the lower end doesn't necessarily mean it's cheap. And vice-versa. A top-shelf price won't necessarily reflect the quality of the contents in the bottle.
We encourage you to go beyond the price tag and your initial impression of the product and dig a little deeper into the brand before purchasing. Understanding that the hemp source, quality control, and brand accountability play a huge part in ensuring you're getting the best value for your CBD oil.
CBD products certainly aren't the cheapest wellness supplement on the market, but many resources go into their production, and there is a large number of people who have a lot to gain from the health benefits.
If you're interested in learning more about the benefits of CBD oil, be sure to check out our other articles like this on our blog.