Farm Bill agreement allows nationwide hemp cultivation for any use – including CBD
The measure is included in the 2018 Farm Bill, which still must pass both houses of Congress before work is concluded ahead of Christmas and all pending legislation dies.
Final approval of the landmark legislation would open many new business opportunities for hemp companies as well as marijuana businesses that want to diversify into a crop that would be fully legal in the eyes of the federal government.
- Allow hemp production in all 50 states for any use, including flower production and CBD or other cannabinoid extraction. States will have the option to submit their own plans to regulate hemp.
- Spell out that licensed hemp producers who grow cannabis plants that exceed the THC limitation of 0.3% will not be guilty of a drug crime but instead must submit a plan to correct the “hot” hemp.
- Allow interstate commerce for hemp and hemp-derived CBD.
- Give the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) the job of overseeing hemp production, with direction to come up with rules “as expeditiously as practicable.”
- Legalize hemp production in U.S. territories and on Indian tribal land – which was not included under the 2014 Farm Bill.
- Give the industry access to federally backed farm support programs, including crop insurance, federal water access and low-interest loans for new farmers.
- Allow hemp producers to “bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill “temporary agricultural jobs.”
- Remove barriers to getting intellectual property protections under federal law, such as patents and trademarks.
- Set a 10-year ban under which state or federal drug felons cannot participate in the hemp program, except for people already growing hemp under a state pilot project (as established by the 2014 Farm Bill).