December 22, 2020
UPDATE: More Good News for Hemp from Capitol Hill
Earlier today, we alerted you about the impending passage of report language that directs the USDA to protect the transportation and sale of in-process hemp extract that temporarily exceeds the 0.3% THC level – and that the DEA has threatened to criminalize in its recent Interim Final Rule.
We’ve now learned that our other advocacy efforts to amend the omnibus appropriations bill were successful as well:
- Flexibility for farmers has been extended. States that are operating under the 2014 Farm Bill authority, which offers farmers greater protections against over-regulation, may now continue on this path until January 1, 2022. A few month ago, we were able to secure extension of this flexibility through September, 2021. But since this date fell within harvest season, we asked for another extension. And Congress listened…and acted.
- Congress made clear to the FDA that the time is now to regulate CBD and other hemp extracts. Through report language, it urged the agency to develop an enforcement discretion policy in a timely manner to protect the sale of hemp extract products:
Congress also instructed USDA that its Interim Final Rule concerning hemp production needed to be improved to protect the ability of farmers to grow hemp without the imminent threat of crop destruction, or the interference of the DEA. Report language in the omnibus appropriations bill cited much of the wish list that we’ve included in comments to the agency:
It’s clear that Congress has our backs. And with a new Vilsack Administration taking over at USDA, we have great hopes for an outstanding 2021 for the hemp farmers and the U.S. hemp industry.