2018 Farm Bill and What it Means for CBD

Thursday, December 20, the day that President Trump signed into law the 2018 Agriculture Improvement Act. The law, which is also known as the Farm Bill, changes the regulation around hemp in the United States.

But What Does the Farm Bill Have to Do with CBD?

This Farm Bill changes the legal definition of the word “hemp” to include hemp-derived products, including cannabinoids like CBD.

The term hemp means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including the seeds thereof and all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.

It also amended the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 to ensure that the definition of marijuana did not include this new definition of hemp.

In the past, all cannabis extracts, whether derived from hemp or marijuana, were Schedule 1 banned substances. But this law clarifies that hemp and hemp derivatives such as CBD are not controlled substances. And this means that the DEA can no longer claim any jurisdiction over hemp-derived CBD. Not that this was ever their focus in the first place.

With all of that being said, this just means that the regulation for hemp derived products will shift to the FDA, USDA and the individual states.

Your State May Ultimately Control the Regulation of CBD

The Farm Bill also allows individual states to enact their own regulations concerning hemp. So, the legalization of federal hemp may end up looking very different, depending upon which state you live in.

While the bill does allow states to make their own rules to an extent, the good news is that the signing of the 2018 Farm Bill says that states will not be able to prohibit the transportation or shipment of hemp or hemp products through their land

Who Will Regulate Hemp-Derived CBD?

Where the USDA will regulate Hemp from an argriculatral standpoint, hemp related products that are produced as food additives, supplements, or potentially medications, will be regulated by the FDA.

When it comes to CBD, it’s very unclear how the FDA will proceed. However based on the growing popularity, revenue implications and increasing health benefits of CBD, it is expected that the FDA will be more and more heavily involved in the regulation of CBD derivatives.

Although the FDA is uncertain as to what to do about hemp-derived CBD, the agency has added several hemp-derived food ingredients to the “generally recognized as safe,” or GRAS, list. Which includes hulled hemp seeds, hemp seed protein and hemp seed oil.

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