Employees sit at a cluttered work desk and discuss CBD in the workplace.

CBD in The Workplace: Can Employers Drug Test for CBD?

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The national legalization of hemp has led to an increase in the market for CBD and cannabis-based products — and an increase in workplace drug testing. If you are one of the many Americans who are just discovering the benefits of cannabidiol (CBD) oil as a holistic health supplement, you might be wondering whether a CBD oil drug test is in the works and whether you are likely to be tested for CBD in the workplace.

How CBD Oil Drug Tests Work

To understand the possibility of CBD oil being detected on a drug test, we first need to cover the basics of how a drug test works. In the United States, there are typically ten substances that drug tests seek to identify — including marijuana, cocaine, and opioids.

To pick up on the use of marijuana (illegal at a federal level) without coming up with a false positive from CBD use (legal at a federal level), drug tests are typically set to pick up threshold levels of the psychoactive compound THC and its metabolite, THC-COOH.

A scientist places liquid in a test tube for a CBD oil drug test.


When you’re wondering about testing for THC or CBD in the workplace, a urine test is the most common kind of testing that you would be asked to undertake. This kind of drug test (not triggered by CBD oil) uses an immunoassay to look for THC-COOH at a concentration of 50 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) or more.

If you have consumed cannabis or a full-spectrum CBD oil that also contains THC, this THC metabolite can show up for around three to fifteen days after use and can remain in your system for more than a month if you are a frequent cannabis or full-spectrum CBD user.


Much less common than urine drug tests, blood tests can only detect THC for up to five hours after use, and THC metabolites for up to seven days after use. Rather than using this method as a CBD oil THC drug test in the workplace, a blood test is most helpful in detecting impairment; for example, in detecting driving or operating machinery under the influence of drugs.

In states that permit the use of cannabis, a THC blood concentration that indicates impairment is generally 1, 2, or 5 mg/ml. In states where the use of cannabis is illegal, there is zero-tolerance for the presence of THC in the blood.


Saliva testing is not often used for detecting drugs and much less for detecting CBD in the workplace. While there are no universal cut-off values for THC or CBD oil in saliva drug tests, recommendations published in 2017 suggest 4 ng/ml of THC as the upper limit. THC in saliva can be detected for about 72 hours after use, but this window could be much longer for frequent users.


Hair THC and CBD oil drug tests are not common and there is no national cut-off limit for THC levels detected in hair. However, private industries may order a hair test to detect the use of cannabis in the last 90 days with a cut-off concentration of 1 picogram per milligram (1 pg/mg) of the THC metabolite THC-COOH.

Be Careful with Products Containing CBN

Although pure CBD oil won’t appear on a drug test, a study conducted by a team of researchers at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center in Salt Lake City found that cannabinol (abbreviated to CBN) will trigger a false positive on some tests. A non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in the hemp and marijuana plants, CBN is often included in CBD-based herbal sleeping aids — so it’s essential that you know whether your CBD oil contains CBN or not.

Two women sitting on a sofa discussing CBD in the workplace.

Be Up-Front About Your Use of CBD

If you’re worried about a CBD oil drug test, honesty is the best policy. Hemp and CBD are legal in various amounts around the country. This varying legal status could be a problem if you think you might have ingested trace amounts of THC in a CBD oil product that was inappropriately labeled.

A drug test that is ordered by your doctor might be looking for THC metabolites to see whether you can be prescribed certain opioid-based medications, while your employer may be looking for cannabis use to determine whether you are likely to turn up to work with impaired judgment. Rather than hide the fact that you use CBD oil before a drug test, it’s much better to let your doctor or employer know beforehand that you use CBD so the results of the drug test can be interpreted in that light.

Avoid Any Unexpected Surprises by Choosing CBD Isolate

Among CBD products for sale today, there are several different types of oil that have vastly different chemical compositions. For example, CBD oil extracted from the marijuana plant will have naturally higher levels of THC, and your CBD oil would make you fail a drug test. In contrast, CBD oil extracted from the hemp plant will contain — by definition — no more than 0.3% THC and shouldn’t be a problem on newer tests used in states where full-spectrum hemp products are legal.

Of the CBD extracted from hemp, full-spectrum oils that include all of the cannabinoids, flavonoids, and CBD terpenes from the plant will carry small amounts of THC. Only broad-spectrum hemp oils with the THC removed and CBD isolate (like what we use at Kratora!) can claim to contain zero THC.

CBD You Can Use with Confidence in the Workplace

The star ingredient in our CBD topicals and flavored CBD oils for sale, our CBD isolate comes from pesticide-free industrial hemp and contains zero THC— so you never have to worry about your CBD oil showing up on a drug test. Read more about how we harvest and craft our high-quality CBD products, and order today for free shipping on orders +$50!

The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from health care practitioners. Please consult your health care professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product.

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