Genuine CBD Products? Revealing CBD Scams on eBay and Amazon
By Guest Author
With so many CBD products available in high street shops and online stores, you may also expect to find some on Amazon or eBay.
Surprisingly, CBD products are banned by both platforms, creating the perfect environment for scammers. In the absence of genuine CBD, snake oil salespeople have flooded these sites with products that look like CBD oil, are priced like CBD oil but contain no CBD.
Online retailers ‘For the Ageless’ investigated these products to find out if CBD could be bought from either site. Their findings gave them a unique insight into avoiding a scam and selecting quality oils.
CBD products on Amazon
On Amazon’s UK site, the sellers’ guidelines ban the sale of all products containing; “Cannabinoids including Cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)”. However, if you do search for CBD on Amazon, you will find hundreds of products that look remarkably like CBD oil.
As with genuine CBD oils, they show a value in mg like 1000mg, or a percentage like 5%, but when you look closer it doesn’t refer to anything. Most call themselves things like ‘Hemp oil drops’ or ‘Enriched Hemp Oil Extract’.
In their research, For the Ageless discovered that on the first results page for the term ‘CBD oil’:
- 70% of the products cost more than £10 for between 10 and 30mls.
- None of them mentioned containing any CBD and appeared to be consisting mainly of hemp seed oil or blend of an unspecified hemp extract.
- 42% of these products were listed with strong implications of health benefits like ‘for anxiety’ and ‘for chronic pain’.
It is likely that most of these oils contain little more than hemp seed oil. This, while having several nutritional benefits, contains no CBD and can be bought for about £7 for 500mls.
When they investigated further, they found that several of these products had rave reviews. Although, below those they found the true story:
“Please don’t be misled as I was – this is not CBD oil, as the listing and answers to questions imply.”
“Falsely advertised as being close to CBD oil but is, in fact, hemp oil.”
“NOT CBD, I REPEAT, NOT CBD”
CBD products on eBay
eBay’s approach to CBD is slightly more complicated. They also ban all CBD products, but they seem confused when asked why. When they were questioned by their customers they responded:
“We do acknowledge your point about the product being legal; however, we haven’t received any such information from the government bodies, including the same.”
The same search term, ‘CBD oil’, yielded 46 results on the first page, 91% of which displayed an amount in mg that, on inspection, didn’t relate to anything. These were predominantly 10ml to 30ml bottles of oil labelled as ‘hemp extract’, ‘hemp oil’ or ‘hemp oil extract’.
Unlike Amazon, on eBay there were some products that did display mentions of CBD. One product labelled as hemp oil included a description of ‘CBD oil solution’ but showed no evidence to indicate that it contained any CBD at all. It is likely that most of these products are mostly hemp seed oil or something similar.
How can I find genuine CBD oil?
Many people assume that eBay and Amazon are trusted sites, and while most of these items aren’t illegal, they are definitely scams. To find out if it is possible to identify genuine CBD oils, we spoke to Daniel, co-founder of for the Ageless:
Following your research, do you think it is ever advisable to purchase CBD oil from Amazon or eBay?
No, unless either site makes significant changes to their guidelines, it is unlikely that you will find good-quality CBD oil there.
What should you look out for to identify a scam?
Look carefully at the label and product description. The scams often have very vague descriptions and don’t call themselves ‘CBD oil’ but use phrases like ‘hemp drops’. CBD oils usually explicitly say how much CBD they contain like ‘300mg CBD’ but scams show a generic amount such as ‘300mg’ with no indication as to what it refers to.
How can you be sure that you’re buying genuine, high-quality CBD products?
Always start with a retailer who has a good reputation. This might be a recommendation from a friend, good reviews on Trustpilot or they could be a member of an industry body like CannaPro or the Cannabis Trades Association.
Once you’ve found a retailer, look for third-party certificates of analysis. These are documents that display the results of lab tests carried out by an independent company. They should be easy to find on the seller’s site and will show you how much of each cannabinoid, including CBD and THC, was detected in the sample.
This will help you verify that any claims on the label of the product are true. We strongly advise that if a company doesn’t let you see the certificates, don’t buy from them.
Another thing to look out for is that every claim like ‘0% THC’ or ‘farmed organically’ should be backed up with evidence. You should expect to see the organic certification or corresponding lab results.
Finally, ask them if there’s anything you’re unsure about. Companies selling genuine, high-quality products will be happy to prove this to you.
Scams are a continuing issue on Amazon, eBay, high street shops and other online stores. To buy genuine CBD products online, follow these simple steps:
- Only buy from recommended retailers.
- Check that the amount of CBD is clearly labelled. For example, ‘500mg CBD’.
- Check the certificates of analysis to verify that it matches the details advertised with the product.
- Don’t buy products that are advertised with specific medical claims or contain more than UK legal limit of THC, which is 1mg per container.
- Determine that any claims like ‘organically farmed’ are backed up with organic certification from a recognised authority.
- Contact the retailer and ask them any remaining questions you have.
Surprisingly, CBD products are banned by both eBay and Amazon, creating the perfect environment for scammers listing non-genuine products…
Should you buy CBD Oil or Hemp oil off Amazon or eBay?
Should you buy CBD Oil or Hemp oil off Amazon or eBay?
CBD (cannabidiol) is a booming supplement, that is currently cementing its place in the health food supplement market and it is here to stay for the long term.
Currently the CBD market in the UK & US is unregulated, therefore there is a potential danger to the public with ‘fake CBD’ products hitting the market.
CBD Oil on Amazon & eBay
It is currently against policy to sell CBD oil on Amazon & eBay, but the unregulated vendors are able to dodge past these rules and regulations by editing the listings and disguising it as ‘Hemp Oil’.
The reason why Amazon & eBay are against selling CBD oil on their platforms, is because they don’t want people to sell untested, unregulated and potentially dangerous products on their platform.
Currently the CBD market as a whole is currently unregulated, but there are some companies who are leading the industry by third-party tests for their products, to prove their label contents.
Why untested CBD products could be dangerous
The reason for third-party lab test is to prove that the products match the concentrations on their labels, and to make sure there are no illegal and potentially dangerous contents in each of their products.
In Utah in the US, there was an incident of people buying cheaper ‘CBD oil’ because they were tempted by the price. The contents of this falsely labelled ‘CBD Oil’ turned out to be dangerous and poisoned a minimum of 52 individuals.
This ‘CBD Oil’ had no actual CBD contents in it, in fact it had the synthetic compound ‘4-cyano CUMYL-BUTINACA’ also called ‘4-CCB’, which is more commonly known as the compound that is present in the illegal & dangerous drug ‘spice’.
You may be tempted by price, but in most cases you ‘get what you pay for’. CBD businesses that have third-party lab tests & are members of the CTA have public safety & customer satisfaction at the forefront of their ethos.
Fake ‘CBD’ products & failing drugs test
Another reason for unregulated CBD retailers is not only safety as number 1, but there has been reports of people failing a drugs test as they have tested for high amounts of THC.
This is found to have been because unregulated and untested retailers of ‘CBD’ have sold products with a high/ illegal amount of THC in their products.
Under dosed CBD products
This also leads us onto another issue of people being ‘ripped off’ by unregulated sellers, a report in the US found that at least 40% of CBD products on the market were under-dosed.
There were some products tested that had little to no CBD in. This often leads to some individuals then believing that CBD does not work, when in fact they have bought a bad or ‘fake’ CBD product.
Even if an unregulated vendor is able to add some CBD into their products, often the technology and extraction methods used will not be up to the standard of regulated retailers who are leading the industry, leading to a lesser CBD product.
Again, as with a lot of things in life ‘you get what you pay for’.
Shocking UK CBD Market Study in 2019
In 2019 a blind study was conducted by the CMC (Centre for Medicinal Cannabis), to evaluate the UK CBD market. It conducted blind testing of 30 major CBD brands available on the UK market and big Highstreet retailers.
The findings of the study were horrifying, almost half (45%) of the products tested had illegal levels of THC and CBN in their products.
One sample which was retailing at £90, had 0% CBD content in the bottle.
Another product had 3.8% ethanol within the bottle, which would mean it would qualify as an alcoholic beverage.
7 products that were tested had evidence of heavy metals and solvents within them.
These results were shocking to hear about, considering some of these products are sitting in big High-street shops and are easily accessible to the public.
Here at YourHemp.co.uk, all of our products are tested & third party tested for your safety. We are fully transparent with our results, and we are proud of our CBD Oils & Water-Soluble CBD products.
We aim to carry being at the forefront of the industry, to offer the purest and safest CBD products and repair the bad reputation of the current market.
Government clamping down on unregulated CBD retailers
The CTA is an association who are working closely with the UK government which includes the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) and the FSA (Food Standard Association).
The government is now finally looking to clean up the industry by working with the CTA (Cannabis Trades Association). The CTA only accept retailers to be members if they are fully legal and compliant with the UK & EU law, this includes products and retailers marketing content.
There are currently a lot of companies who are claiming medicinal benefits of CBD, this is illegal to do so as CBD is not a medicinal product, please stay clear of these potentially dangerous retailers.
The CTA also only accept retailers who get all of their products third-party lab tested, but they are now also testing each of their members products as well as the third-party lab tests to prove the product contents.
This movement of the government is a massive positive for the industry, cleaning out the poor quality & potentially unsafe retailers and keeping the high quality & legal retailers for the benefit of the public.
Our final top tips when buying CBD
We will keep this short and simple, when looking to buy CBD product always look for:
- Retailers to be members of the CTA (Cannabis Trades Association)
- Third-party lab tested products
We at YourHemp will continue to be leaders of the CBD industry by having all of our products third-party tested, while being members of the CTA.
Shop the latest CBD products by YourHemp by clicking HERE.
Reasons why you shouldn't buy CBD Oil or Hemp oil products off Amazon or eBay – Shop the latest CBD products in the UK at YourHemp – Free Delivery over £40