With the passing of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 aka "The 2018 Farm bill", hemp has been removed from the Federal Controlled Substances Act by removing hemp from the definition of marihuana or tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Legislation outlining hemp production was codified into the Agriculture Marketing Act of 1946 Subtitle G - Hemp Production. In various areas of existing laws, hemp was added to various sections making hemp production available for crop insurance, banking etc.
The 2018 Farm Bill provided two pathways for occupational licensing. Section 297B allows for state departments of agriculture or Indian tribes and Section 297C allows for farmers to be licensed directly from USDA. Depending on how the Texas Legislation is written, will determine which pathway Texas farmers will be able to start growing hemp. Click here for side-by-side comparison of Section 297B and Section 297C.
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- Section 7606 in the 2014 Federal Farm bill defined industrial hemp to be from the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of such plant, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis making hemp cultivation available as University or Department of Agriculture pilot programs.
- July 28, 2017, James Comer (R-KY) introduced H.R. 3530, a new version of the Industrial Hemp Farming Act along with 15 cosponsors.
James Comer introduced new legislation (H.R. 3530) to reduce the burden of regulations and statutes applicable to industrial hemp, an industry which is growing by leaps and bounds in Kentucky.
Currently, the statute allows "pilot projects" and "research," but the industry needs more clarity and certainty to encourage investment and growth. Potential industrial uses include lighter, stronger fibers for composite materials and plywood, as well as textiles, and the constituent chemicals and oils for medical, food, and cosmetic applications. The new act facilitates commercialization by taking the important step of removing industrial hemp containing 0.3% or less of the psychoactive ingredient THC from the Controlled Substances Act's definition of "marihuana." Additionally, the bill would allow research into hemp with as much as 0.6% THC, still far below psychoactive levels. [source]
- Resolutions encouraging the cultivation of industrial hemp can be found on the Republican and Democrat platforms and added in the Texas Farm Bureau policy manual.
- In 2015, HB 557 industrial hemp bill by Rep. Joe Farias (D-San Antonio) passed 5 to 2 out of the House Agriculture and Livestock Committee but failed to pass out of the Calendars Committee.
- In 2017, HB 3587 industrial hemp bill by
Authors: Zedler | Lozano | Sheffield | Canales and
Coauthors: Biedermann | Cain | Coleman | Collier | Dutton | Giddings | Gooden | Guillen | Hernandez | Howard | Isaac | Longoria | Lucio III | Moody | Nevárez | Rodriguez, Eddie | Romero, Jr. | Rose | Stephenson | Stickland | White | Wilson passed unanimously of the House Agriculture and Livestock Committee but failed to pass out of the Calendars Committee.
HB 3587 was filed by Representative Bill Zedler and would accomplish the following:
Define hemp as being from the plant variety, Cannabis sativa L, that contains 0.3% or less of THC therefore hemp is non-hallucinogenic.
Defines hemp and hemp derived products being used as for food and application for humans and feed and application for animals and for fiber and product manufacturing.
Allow Texas farmers to apply for a license from the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) with fees with amounts that are comparable to fees association with the production of other crops.
Farmers would submit GPS coordinates of the hemp field location to be submitted to the Sheriff's office by TDA.
Field would be inspected by TDA to insure that the crop is compliant with the THC complaint threshold.
Crop that exceeds the THC complaint threshold will be destroyed per TDA rules.
Anyone knowing and intentionally growing a plant to exceed the THC complaint threshold for marijuana will be subject to marijuana laws..