’90-95%’ of hemp products at risk of being banned – here’s why

hemp amendment

The hemp-derived cannabinoid market in America has exploded ever since the 2018 Farm Bill was passed. A slew of delta-9 drinks, THC-A flower, and THC-P vapes have flooded smoke shops and even liquor store shelves. But hemp operators fear it could all come crashing down as the 2024 Farm Bill begins to take shape.

Congresswoman Mary Miller, a Republican from Illinois, filed an amendment that “changes the definition of hemp … to only include naturally occurring, naturally derived, and non-intoxicating cannabinoids.” The U.S. House Committee on Agriculture is expected to debate the addition today.

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As it stands, the Farm Bill defines federally legal hemp as having no more than 0.3 percent THC by dry weight. The classification is a bit of a gray area, as it has allowed intoxicating products made from hemp to flourish. Rep. Miller’s amendment seeks to make the distinction more black and white.

Posting on X (formerly Twitter), Rep. Miller wrote, “I am offering an amendment to close the loophole that legalized intoxicating hemp products like “Delta-8,” which is being marketed to teenagers and children. These drug-infused products are often sold in colorful packaging next to candy and snacks, which parents strongly oppose!”

The U.S. Hemp Roundtable, a lobbying group made up of hemp operators, issued a call to action after the amendment was filed. They urge supporters to contact their congressional representatives before it’s too late.

The “90%-95% of the hemp products market would be federally banned,” the group said. U.S. Hemp Roundtable General Counsel Jonathan Miller argued that it wouldn’t just be products like delta-8 that would be at risk but also non-intoxicating CBD products. He also maintained the amendment would send the hemp space into chaos.

“The redefinition of hemp to include a calculation of THC-A would wreak havoc in the fiber and grain markets … killing tens of thousands of agriculture and retail jobs, and denying access to popular products that Americans count on for their health and wellness,” he said.

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The U.S. Cannabis Council, a trade organization comprised of several multi-state cannabis operators, supports a ban on intoxicating hemp products. The group circulated a letter last month pushing for an amendment much like Rep. Miller’s.

However, even if the amendment is adopted, analysts believe the Farm Bill overall is a long shot due to partisan politics.

“This Farm Bill is on life support as it is,” Jonathan Miller told MJBizDaily. “It’s going to be a tall order to get a Farm Bill passed this year.”

rachelle gordon

Rachelle Gordon is a cannabis journalist, Emerald Cup judge, Budist critic, and editor of GreenState.com. She began her weed writing journey in 2015 and has been featured in High Times, CannabisNow, Beard Bros, MG, Skunk, and many others. Rachelle currently splits her time between Minneapolis and Oakland; her favorite cannabis cultivars include Silver Haze and Tangie. Follow Rachelle on Instagram @rachellethewriter