December 11, 2018 Feature

The Hemp Revolution Will Not be Televised... Yet

By Lisa L. Pittman

While cannabis legalization is sweeping the nation and the spotlight, either through medical programs in 33 states and the District of Columbia, adult use programs in 10 states and the District of Columbia, or decriminalization measures undertaken in many metropolitan cities, hemp is the emerging giant of this new industry, which all burgeons from the same cannabis plant. In contrast to cannabis, which is tightly regulated from a law enforcement perspective because of its status on Schedule 1 of the U.S. Controlled Substances Act (CSA), hemp, which derives from the nonflowering portions of the cannabis plant containing low tetrahydrocannabinol (< 0.3% THC, the compound in the plant causing euphoria), is subject to much less regulation. Currently, enormous market potential and public awareness of the benefits of cannabidiol (CBD, the compound in the plant possessing a plethora of therapeutic benefits) are increasing exponentially, particularly among those discovering its capabilities to reduce inflammation, pain, and anxiety. See, e.g., Alex Williams, Why Is CBD Everywhere?, New York Times, Oct. 27, 2018.

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