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article imageOne unintended outcome of Farm Bill — Smokable hemp

By Karen Graham     Jun 5, 2019 in Business
Since the passage of the Farm Bill in December, hemp production and sales have been center-stage regarding the presence of cannabidiol, CBD, and its presence in food and drinks. But what about smoking hemp?
With the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp was removed from the Controlled Substances Act. The intentions behind doing this were to open up opportunities for farmers growing the product as well as manufacturers who could use the plant in a wide range of products, from textiles to skincare products.
With recreational marijuana use legal in 33 states and the District of Columbia, as well as Canada, it was only natural that questions would arise on the legality of the presence of cannabidiol or CBD in hemp. In the U.S., “hemp” is defined as Cannabis sativa L. with a THC concentration that does not exceed 0.3 percent.
Cannabis has a much higher concentration of THC, the compound that gives you a buzz or high. Cannabis also has CBD, along with over 100 more compounds. Do it was little wonder that people had questions about hemp. Of course, the FDA stepped in and said the CBD was not allowed in food or drinks and supplements until they had figured out how to regulate the compound.
What about smoking hemp?
Seeing as hemp has so little THC in it, smoking hemp would not give a person the high associated with smoking marijuana, but it might give someone a "fleeting but pleasant buzz." Besides, pre-rolls and hemp buds probably weren't the biggest concerns from officials when the Farm Bill was being written up.
Due to the way the Farm Bill is worded, hemp pre-rolls and flowers are left out of these particular federal regulations. State oversite in the matter is a bit different on smokable hemp. For example, in New York, where marijuana for medical use is legal, smokable forms of cannabis are banned.
Hemp buds can be found throughout the city’s bodegas, in addition to a full “CBD dispensary” on St. Marks Place, according to Cannabis Wire. Chris Husong, Elixinol VP of communications and marketing, told Cannabis Wire that in the U.S. and Europe, smokable hemp has become very popular.
The bud of a Cannabis sativa flower coated with trichomes bearing cannabidiol and other cannabinoids...
The bud of a Cannabis sativa flower coated with trichomes bearing cannabidiol and other cannabinoids.
Psychonaught via Wikimedia
Jonathan Miller, a spokesperson for the lobbying group Hemp Roundtable, also noted that pre-rolls “seem to be quite popular” and that industry stakeholders “are anxious to see how local legislators and federal regulators will regulate hemp.”
In Nebraska, smokable hemp products began appearing in a few stores in the Metro and in Lincoln just a few days after the Nebraska Hemp Farming Act was signed into law by the governor, reports ABC affiliate KETV.
Sarpy County Attorney Lee Polikov said his office is wading through the new law. He also believes smokable hemp could be confusing and costly. He pointed out that hemp smoke smells like marijuana and drug dogs hit on some hemp products. Officers could be forced to test the THC content to determine whether a suspect had been smoking hemp or marijuana.
One pack of pre-rolled hemp smokables is going for $20, says Jayde Ryan. "I don't feel any marijuana effect or nothing."
"It's still worth it," Tasha Ryan said. "When you think about, the cost of CBD is way cheaper than prescription medications and it kills less people."
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