This Week in CBD: May 17, 2019
A long-awaited disaster-aid bill is being held up, at least in part, by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who wants to make sure that the bill includes protections for hemp farmers.
The 2018 farm bill legalized hemp and opened the door for farmers to apply for crop insurance, but McConnell wants to ensure there are explicit protections for hemp farmers in case of disaster.
On Wednesday, a hard-fought-for bill to legalize hemp production passed unanimously in the Texas Senate. However, there are still significant differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill that will have to be negotiated before it becomes law.
The bill would legalize hemp and hemp-derived extracts like CBD oil (with less than 0.3% THC), bringing state law into line with the federal hemp legislation.
In Iowa this week, Governor Kim Reynolds signed the Iowa Hemp Act. The new law will allow licensed farmers to grow up to 40 acres of hemp, starting in 2020.
Unfortunately, Governor Reynolds also issued a statement arguing that the bill will not legalize the retail sale of CBD, making this a mixed victory for CBD consumers, at best.
Oklahoma CBD shoppers had some good news on Monday when Governor Kevin Stitt signed legislation that will explicitly authorize the sale of hemp-derived CBD at retail.
And according to the U.S. Hemp Roundtable, the legislation makes Oklahoma the first state to require CBD labels to include country of origin and whether the CBD is natural or synthetic.
You may have heard of the 69-year old grandmother who was arrested at Disney World last month when a guard found CBD oil in her purse.
Hester Burkhalter, the woman in question, had her drug charge dropped but has since retained a lawyer and is demanding an apology for the arrest.
So far, Disney World has declined to take responsibility.
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A North Carolina woman was also arrested and charged with marijuana possession for smoking hemp flower in her apartment.
When the police showed up, she showed them paperwork which described the flower as being hemp rather than marijuana, but she has since been charged with possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.
And in other news that illustrates the gray legal area that CBD still occupies in some parts of the US, law enforcement deputies raided a South Florida CBD oil distribution center this week. They confiscated barrels of hemp flower, even though the owners had third-party lab reports to confirm that THC levels were within federally legal limits.
Florida passed a hemp bill earlier this month (which is waiting to be signed into law), but it would appear that law enforcement is still treating CBD as an illicit substance.