Farm Bill 2018: Bringing More Clarity About Hemp and Marijuana Differences

September 28th, 2018 by Javed Pathan

Hemp and Marijuana Differences

We’ve talked a bit about the Farm Bill and have urged you to get involved by reaching out to your local elected officials and asking them to help our farmers and our bodies by voting “yes” on hemp.  Here’s a brief overview on the Farm Bill as it pertains to hemp (this is a big fat bill with BOATLOADS of other non-hemp provisions)  and our progress to date.

Recently, the U.S. House and Senate introduced a new Farm Bill to build on the 2014 Farm Bill that brought a variety of programs to help agriculture and food policies. While the 2014 bill helped bring a pilot research program for hemp, the new bill is poised to make domestic hemp officially legal.

It’s been a long road for hemp farmers dealing with the ambiguities of U.S. legality. Will this finally bring more clarity to what hemp really is to avoid confusion with marijuana?

Let’s take a look at the bill’s major details to understand what it means.

The Most Recent Update to the Bill

Earlier this month, the House and Senate passed the new bill with a bicameral conference committee going forward on September 5. The intention of this meeting was to sort out differences on the 2014 and 2018 bills since disagreements do remain.

Regardless, the news of hemp finally being legalized is a boost for the CBD industry and for consumers like you who likely consume it.

Thanks to the above support from both sides of the political aisle, the hope is the bill will be finalized and sent to the President by the end of September.

Despite removing hemp from being a Schedule I drug, will it truly help distinguish the difference between marijuana and hemp?

Taking a Pro-Hemp Stance

It’s always fortunate when we see a bipartisan effort toward something positive. This current farm bill is the result of Democrats and Republicans working together to make sure the hemp industry has more legal soundness.

In large part, you can thank Republican Senator Mitch McConnell in getting more research going for hemp in his home state of Kentucky. The hemp research program designed in 2014 yielded $16 million for Kentucky farmers. This compelled McConnell to write an op-ed earlier this year on the merits of hemp in his home state.

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden can also take credit for starting the bill back in 2012. He continues to argue that the research programs have already provided plenty of time for numerous states to start fully growing hemp. Previously, some farmers had no idea how to grow it because of the fear of doing so illegally.

What Will the Bill Officially Say About Hemp?

One provision in the new farm bill is that anyone who had a prior drug crime felony can’t grow hemp. Some senators have shown dismay over this provision since the point of the bill is to prove hemp is safe to use.

Certainly, the confusion over hemp and marijuana has long been the stumbling block of making it legal. While CBD comes from the same cannabis plant, it doesn’t have THC to provide the psychoactive effect marijuana does.

Having this distinction made available in a federal bill is going to become very important after decades of confusion and wasted opportunity.

The Medicinal Value of CBD

We can only hope the farm bill is signed by the President. Despite still being up in the air at the time of this writing, it can also help complement recent reports from the FDA substantiating the medicinal value of CBD.

Much of this comes from the FDA recently approving a drug with CBD in it to treat epilepsy. Having this backed by the federal government alone has helped prove CBD as an important product to help manage many different illnesses.

The passing of the 2018 Farm Bill will push this fact forward while advancing the use of hemp in so many other agricultural and health & wellness industries.

Visit us at Green Wellness Life to learn more about CBD and the future of what it could do to help human (and pet) health.