You can watch the video here:
[embed]https://www.facebook.com/hemproundtable/videos/2073069156244648/[/embed]The final bill language is available here. I’m excited to report that Senator McConnell and his colleagues listened closely to farmers and the industry in drafting the legislation. Indeed, the bill covers nearly every item from the U.S. Hemp Roundtable’s dream wish list. While we will have a lot to say about this bill in the coming days, here’s a quick summary:
- It would remove hemp – all parts of the cannabis sativa L plant with a concentration of not more than 0.3% THC -- from the purview of the Controlled Substances Act. Better yet, the bill is even more expansive than the 2014 Farm Bill in that it specifically de-schedules all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, and seeds of hemp as long as those portions of the plant remain below the THC threshold. This means that popular hemp food products like hemp-derived CBD would be considered agricultural commodities, not controlled substances.
- It would allow states (and Native American Tribes) to regulate hemp growth and cultivation in their jurisdictions, building off of the 2014 Farm Bill pilot programs. The states would submit a regulatory plan to USDA, which must demonstrate policies to pinpoint locations of hemp production, to test for THC, and to destroy uncompliant plants. Many states have already developed compliant regulatory structures for their pilot programs that can be easily transitioned for these purposes.
- It makes hemp research eligible for competitive grant funding at USDA – and in a recent improvement that the Roundtable requested, crop insurance would finally be made available for hemp farmers. It would clarify that nothing in this act authorizes interference with the interstate transportation or commerce of hemp or hemp products – an important statement to protect hemp farmers and businesses from misguided regulatory overreach.
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