20 state attorneys general (AG) wrote a letter to Congress on March 20, 2024, asking Congress to “address the glaring vagueness created in the 2018 Farm Bill that has led to the proliferation of intoxicating hemp products across the nation and challenges for the ability for states and localities to respond to the resulting health and safety crisis.” 

With the prospect of the 2024 Farm Bill looming these AGs, some republican but mostly democrat, suggest that the 2018 Farm Bill created an industry that remains unregulated and causes nothing but problems. With all due respect to these AGs, their view might be shortsighted at best. The hemp industry that has directly resulted from the 2018 Farm Bill is regulated and has not led to a health and safety crisis. 

Interestingly enough, two of the signatories to that request to Congress oversee state hemp markets that are brimming with regulations of the hemp-derived products industry. Minnesota has an extremely well-regulated hemp-derived products industry, with many states using it as a model for the regulatory framework of beverages containing hemp-derived cannabinoids. The Tennessee Code Annotated has a specific section going into effect in the coming months that was created to: “regulate the sale and distribution of products containing hemp-derived cannabinoids.” 

Some of the authors of this request to Congress have seen laws that attempt to regulate hemp-derived products out of existence successfully challenged in court on various grounds. In Maryland, for example, an argument based on state monopoly laws successfully defeated a program protecting marijuana interests while squashing hemp. Arkansas saw its attempt to ban downstream hemp products successfully litigated in a landmark decision. 

What the AGs fail to understand is that absent the hemp-derived products industry, hemp farmers will not have anywhere for their crops to go. With an estimated $28 billion dollar at stake, the hemp-derived products industry provides the shot in the arm to state agricultural programs that was the intention of the 2018 Farm Bill. Moreover, the hemp-derived products industry favors regulations that balance consumer safety with market demand. Regulations specifically aimed at restricting the availability of products to certain ages, mandating good manufacturing practices to ensure products are made responsibly, requiring thorough testing and accurate labeling of products. Operators in this industry want to be regulated and they want stability in knowing what they can and cannot do.

It has been said that attorney generals operate in the unique intersection of policy, politics, and the law. Much like state AGs, the hemp industry is at the same intersection. MC Nutraceuticals recognizes that some state policies clearly favor federally illegal products (marijuana) while politics in other states allow small businesses to thrive with minimal government overreach, and it sees that the law must strike a balance to provide operators, regulators, and enforcement offices the stability they all want- a well-regulated industry. MC Nutraceuticals looks forward to working with NoCo attendees to create this stability for everyone as we continue the progression of America’s cannabis industry.

1 https://cannabusiness.law/wp-content/uploads/farm-bill-letter-1.pdf
2 https://www.health.state.mn.us/people/cannabis/edibles/docs/compliancefactsheet0224
3 T.C.A. § 43-27-201 et seq.
4 Maryland Hemp Coalition, Inc., et al. v Wes Moore, et al., C-21-CV-23-348
5 Bio Gen LLC v. Sanders, 4:23-CV-00718-BRW (E.D. Ark. Sep. 8, 2023)
6 https://whitneyeconomics.com/blog/us-national-cannabinoid-report—executive-summary

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The post MC Nutraceuticals: Advocates for Stability in the Hemp Industry first appeared on Let’s Talk Hemp.


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