This Week in CBD: March 29, 2019
CBD advocates in Ohio are following the progress of a bill that would establish and regulate hemp cultivation and processing in the state, while also clearly legalizing CBD.
If the bill is signed into law, Ohio will join 41 other states that have already implemented hemp agriculture, including its neighbors Kentucky, Indiana, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.
On Thursday, the state’s Senate passed the bill unanimously. Next, the House must consider the bill.
If you live in a CBD-friendly state, you might already be seeing CBD products in your local shopping malls and drugstores.
On Wednesday, Walgreens announced its plans to begin selling CBD products in 1,500 of its stores in nine states. The next morning, Walgreens stock was up 1.4 percent.
Simon Malls and CVS have already jumped on the CBD trend, and the list of major retailers is growing.
The difficulty in distinguishing between high-THC cannabis and hemp continues to cause difficulty for law enforcement.
The equipment used to test for high-THC forms of cannabis isn’t sensitive enough to distinguish between trace levels of THC in hemp and the higher levels in other varieties of cannabis.
As a result, the DEA is looking for private companies to provide technology for more precise field tests that could tell the difference between legal levels of THC.
This Week’s CBD Deals
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Idaho’s legislature is working on a bill that will legalize hemp, while also defining regulations for interstate transport that passes through the state.
This effort follows a hemp-related lawsuit against Idaho state agencies for seizing a shipment of cannabis back in January.
Gov. Janet Mills of Maine signed a bill this week allowing CBD to be added to food products in the state.
State officials had begun issuing warning letters to businesses that carried CBD products earlier this year. This law will protect Maine’s farmers, manufacturers and retailers from enforcement under state law, but it won’t have any effect on federal regulations.
Florida advanced a hemp bill through the state Senate’s agriculture committee this week.
The state has an industrial hemp pilot program, but this bill would expand the program in line with the 2018 Farm Bill’s changes.
But in Louisiana, the state’s Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control is planning a CBD crackdown.
In an advisory letter issued last week, the office notes that the state’s board of pharmacy has advised that any cannabis extract, including CBD, is a schedule one substance under Louisiana’s Controlled Dangerous Substance Law.
The office plans to issue citations to retailers offering CBD products and order the removal of CBD products from the premises.
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In Kansas, the House approved a bill that would create an affirmative defense for the use of CBD oil containing small amounts of THC.
CBD items that contain THC would still be illegal to buy, sell, or manufacture in the state. But parents of children with debilitating illnesses and adults with similarly serious conditions would be able to defend themselves against possession charges in court.
Furthermore, the Department for Children and Families would not be able to remove children from a parent’s care solely because of the use of CBD for a debilitating illness. Before it can take effect, the bill still needs to go through the state’s Senate and be signed into law.
A new report from the Brightfield Group predicts that the European CBD market will grow by 400 percent in the next four years.
Currently, the UK and Austria have the largest markets for CBD, but the report’s projections indicate that demand in Germany will eventually outpace both countries.
Epidiolex is headed to Japan. While the country generally prohibits cannabis products, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare announced its approval for clinical trials for patients with Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes.
These are the same severe forms of epilepsy for which the FDA has approved the drug in the US.