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Hemp regulation roundup: Across U.S., growers and sellers scramble under overbearing rules


The past year has been revelatory for customers, farmers and retailers of hemp and CBD products alike.


As different states and jurisdictions change their cannabis laws, stakeholders, enthusiasts and entrepreneurs have faced a litany of challenges and exciting developments. Across the industry, however, exhaustion at draconian and confusing federal and local rules is a common thread.


“You can’t expect the private sector to follow laws that different enforcement agencies don’t agree on,” Hemp Farmer Luis Hummel told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “That’s just common logic.” [1]


Hummel was indicted of criminal charges last year for producing a “hot” harvest of hemp that contained too much CBD, the Tribune reports, and was forced to give up on the CBD and hemp agriculture business by court order. [1]


According to Market Watch, CBD Unlimited and other companies have been frustrated by rules at the federal level, including those proliferated and enforced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. [3]


“These guidelines will help our community come together with a sense of certainty,” CBD Unlimited CEO Todd Davis told Market Watch. “As we look to 2020, demand levels for our products have increased exponentially this year and we expect continued escalation, and expanded distribution, both domestically and internationally.” [3]


Market Watch reports that USDA expanded the scope for its public comment period in January so more people and businesspeople could give feedback as it works on regulations that may impact as many as 30 states’ policies on cannabis, CBD and industrial hemp generally. [3]


At the same time, some states are hoping to expand people’s access to CBD and hemp trades even in unfriendly atmospheres.


One such example is South Dakota, where the House of Representatives passed a bill this week to legalize the trade and cultivation of hemp despite pushback from Governor Kristi Noem, who insists on “guardrails” for the implementation of the state’s bill. [4]


For Noem, the main block to implementing legal cannabis is funding the program to test THC levels in the crops.


THC is the intoxicating compound of marijuana, and trace amounts of THC exist in CBD and hemp products but laws that enforce it too strictly result in persecutions like those of Luis Hummel.


Sources

[1] http://www.startribune.com/fledgling-hemp-industry-faces-existential-regulatory-threat/567910172/?refresh=true

[2] https://www.miamiherald.com/miami-com/restaurants/article240330866.html

[3] https://www.marketwatch.com/press-release/cbd-and-hemp-regulations-are-confusing-for-companies-such-as-cbd-unlimited-inc-otc-pink-edxc-2020-02-06

[4] https://www.nothingbuthemp.net/post/update-south-dakota-house-approves-industrial-hemp-legalization-measures

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