The 2018 Farm Bill unleashed the green rush!


Hemp Crops on the sunset
The 2018 Farm Bill was signed into law by the President Trump on December 20th, 2018. One of the major changes of the bill was to put an end to five decades of hemp prohibition. 
Seven little words at the end of the 2018 Farm Bill—“The term ‘marihuana’ does not include hemp”—amount to the most significant change to American drug policy since the CSA was enacted in 1971. For the first time, Congress has acknowledged that not all varieties of the plant cannabis sativa L. are intoxicating. Instead, the law now says, cannabis varieties with trace amounts of THC—no more than 0.3%—should be treated like any other crop.
The 2018 Farm Bill, among other things:
  • Removed hemp’s low amounts of THC from the Controlled Substances Act;
  • Allows the U.S. Department of Agriculture to regulate hemp crop like any other agricultural commodity;
  • Allows hemp production in all 50 states for any use, including flower production and CBD or other cannabinoid extraction;
  • Allows interstate commerce for hemp and hemp-derived CBD
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Food and Drug Association (FDA) are trying to provide clearer guidance on the new bill, as there are still some misinterpretation and doubts regarding the bill.
After the signing of the 2018 Farm Bill, the FDA Commissioner published an update on hemp and CBD regulations, restating existing policies, but reminding the public that the 2018 Farm Bill did not necessarily change the FDA’s authority to regulate products with cannabis and its derivatives, but pointed to the idea that with the increased public interest in cannabis, the FDA needs to clarify its regulations.

 

Booming business

U.S. sales of CBD-containing products are on the rise, and industry watchers expect a growing market in years to come. Epidiolex, an antiseizure drug made available in 2018, is the only prescription medication containing CBD. Sales figures beginning with 2018 are estimates. 

U.S. CBD market growth and projections, 2014–2022

E. OTWELL

Source: New Frontier Data 2018, Hemp Business Journal

Sales of hemp-derived CBD products have largely been relegated to small or independent retail channels, such as e-commerce sites, cannabis and smoke accessory shops as well as natural wellness stores. They have also picked up traction in alternative health settings—acupuncture, massage and pain management clinics, for example. Hemp-derived CBD products fare less well in medical or adult-use marijuana dispensaries because of the competition there with cannabis-derived CBD and THC products. This landscape has kept the industry relatively small. 

Let's see what 2019 will bring for us for this new exciting industry!!!

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