President Donald Trump signed a bill on Thursday, December 20th legalizing industrial hemp across the country. Prior to this bill being passed, laws were vague and farmers had to operate on the edge of the law. The 2018 farm bill that included this new legislation, will stay in effect for five years and covers various topics related to agricultural and food policy for the entire country.


Up until now, hemp and CBD was lumped in with marijuana as a schedule 1 controlled substance. Now with legalization, the industry has an opportunity to bloom, not only the CBD market but hemp textiles, food and fuel markets too. With the passing of this law, hemp related businesses will have far more fluidity with shipping, production, sales and banking related to their hemp enterprises. It is important to note, that only hemp is legal federally, not it’s psychoactive sister marijuana. Hemp is defined as a cannabis plant with less than 0.3% THC content.


Clarity To Confusing Laws…


In the past, laws have been hazy and confusing, varying drastically from state-to-state. This legislation clears the fog and brings clarity to the industry. Although individual states may instate their own rules and regulations surrounding CBD and hemp, this cash crop and incredible medicine is now legal and likely to remain so in the majority of the united states.


There are many states such as Colorado, Kentucky and California that were ahead of the game with legalizing hemp. However, there were difficult barriers when it came to transporting industrial hemp, because it could only pass across borders of states where the plant was legal. Now that hemp prohibition is over, seeds, plants and all hemp related products can safely be transported across state lines. Hemp farmers are now legitimate and on par legally with any other agricultural product from carrots to cotton.


Mitch McConnell: A Hemp Pioneer…


Kentucky senator Mitch McConnell spear headed the legalization of hemp, by writing this important aspect into the 2018 farm bill. He has been pro hemp for many years, and this is a huge victory for him and the rest of the country. As Mitch McConnell states below:


“With the stroke of his pen, President Trump has made it official. My bill legalizing industrial hemp is law. Now that the President has signed it, Kentucky‘s farmers can continue to lead the nation in the growing, processing and manufacturing of industrial hemp. I am confident the ingenuity of Kentucky’s farmers and producers will find new and creative uses for this exciting crop. We are at the beginning of a new era, and I cannot wait to see what comes next. As Senate Majority Leader, I was proud to do my part to bring hemp back to Kentucky, and I look forward to continuing to support its bright future in the Bluegrass State.”


CBD And The FDA…


Additionally, this bill explicitly maintains the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) authority to regulate products containing cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds. Which means, CBD is still in a grey area. Although it has been removed from the controlled substance list, the FDA may have plans to regulate it. With the huge influx of CBD businesses and producers, many of which making health claims, this marks CBD with a big red flag from the FDA’s standpoint. There are several large pharmaceutical firms that are developing drugs derived from CBD and other compounds found in cannabis. These are exciting developments for the industry, however we also run the risk of CBD losing its natural elements, and simply becoming another pharmaceutical.


In fact, recently the FDA calls CBD products illegal:

“Selling unapproved products with unsubstantiated therapeutic claims is not only a violation of the law, but also can put patients at risk, as these products have not been proven to be safe or effective,” Gottlieb wrote.

The Future of Cannabis…

Although there are new laws and regulations around cannabis, the future is still uncertain. Though it appears that with the passing of this law, CBD will be more widely available, and the use of industrial hemp for textiles, rope and over 25,000 hemp derived products will continue to expand. With so many states implementing medical and recreational marijuana, many industry leaders are speculating that marijuana will soon be legalized, just like in Canada. Time will tell, however it seems likely that federal laws around marijuana cannabis will slowly loosen.


Patriot Hemp


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