With Governor Jon Bel Edwards signing the House Bill 491, which permits the production of industrial hemp and also legalizes the sale of CBD related products on Thursday (June 17) in the state of Louisiana, the legal scenario surrounding CBD may finally clear up.
The legality of CBD in the state has been smeared in confusion for over months now, reaching a high point with the arrest of a CBD seller in Lafayette last month.
Though CBD products may be termed law-abiding, the sale of it had been labeled illegal by many of the state officials. The Lafayette Parish Sheriff Mark Garber, following the arrest of the owner of Cajun Cannabis, DeYoung’s, stated “Just because something is being offered in a retail establishment does not necessarily mean that it is totally legal to sell it,”
While the 2018 Farm Bill exempted hemp from the list of controlled substances, the bill permitted it in the agricultural crop category and stipulated regulations and control on how hemp needs to be reared.
Local Attorney Dylan Heard stated that with hemp containing less than 0.3 percent of THC, the substance linked with causing the euphoric high, the federal government termed hemp products to be ‘legal’.
House Bill 491
Tracing back, the original House Bill 491 didn’t stipulate the sale of CBD and related products, but as of May 7, the bill was amended to include key changes involving the stance of CBD.
As expected, the retailers will need to follow strict and steadfast protocols levied by the federal government regarding CBD and its sales.
With Gov. Jon Bel Edwards signing the house bill, that legalized hemp which has THC concentration of less than 0.3%, the ATC released a statement announcing that along with the Louisiana Department of Health, the ATC are working to formulate proper rules that will detail out necessary regulations associated with CBD; and by June 17, 2019, applications for CBD retailers will be made available.
Hemp and CBD
Hemp along with its potent byproduct, CBD, is obtained from Cannabis Sativa, the same species that offer marijuana. But unlike marijuana, CBD does not contain enough of THC, associated with causing “high”, making it legal and non-addictive in nature.
CBD, extracted from hemp is being studied for its therapeutic benefits and employed in a plethora of products such as oils, topical, tinctures, lotions, food products and CBD drinks, etc. Hemp has also found wide industrial usage in the form of fuels, textiles and other products as well.
Louisiana farmers looking to embrace hemp farming
With the bill, Louisiana will be tapping the potential of growing hemp industry with roots well settled in the state itself. The ATC looks to control the retailing of CBD through proper licensing and regulations.
Agriculture Commissioner, Mike Strain would be tasked with drafting new rules, at offering permits and eliminating produces and products that do not satisfy the THC margin, thereby playing a decisive role in regulating the hemp program.
The regulations will be followed meticulously and pay complete heed to the federal rules, reaffirms Strain.
With this development, agricultural specialists comment that hemp will rise as a valuable monetary crop to the likes of farmers. The state of Louisiana will be joining the list of 30 other states, which have already incorporated hemp as a farming crop, with the state farmers rejoiced at the rearing of the ‘money crop’.
With the application process for Louisiana retailers who look to sell CBD products being made available through the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control from June 17, the state looks to evaluate the nature of potential vendors. Additionally, the state has been required to provide a regulatory plan to the federal government by November 1.