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Indiana bill would regulate hemp, ban some CBD products

INDIANAPOLIS (WPTA21) — A bill that was recently passed by the Indiana Senate looks to regulate the production of hemp and its uses.

Senate Bill 516 would create an Indiana hemp advisory committee to provide advice regarding Indiana’s hemp laws.  It would also make some CBD products that are currently for sale in the state illegal.

The bill comes as the federal 2018 Farm Bill removed industrial hemp from the Controlled Substances Act. This makes hemp a legal crop.

The FDA said hemp products contain less than .3 percent of THC. This is the psycho-active chemical found in marijuana.

A fiscal note attached to the bill states the U.S. hemp-based product sales for 2017 was $820 M in categories such as textiles, industrial applications, personal care, CBD oil, and food. The global industrial hemp market size is estimated at $3.9B.

The bill would require growers have a license with the state, which could be revoked if the grower fails to cooperate.

The Midwest Hemp Council praised the passage of the bill, saying it ensures that farmers work with state regulators and explicitly legalizes the commercial production of hemp in Indiana.

However, a recently-added amendment to the bill has at least one state Senator worried.

The amendment bans smokeable CBD products. It also makes it illegal to buy or sell CBD flower.

RTV6 reports state Senator Karen Tallian says the way the bill is written would likely make several CBD products illegal, not just the flower.

The bill states “smokable hemp” is a product that allows THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke or vapor.

This includes hemp bud and hemp flower but does not include a hemp plant that is, or parts of a hemp plant that are, grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product.

This addition to the bill would mean users of CBD would no longer be able to buy the CBD flower or consume the oil through a vape pen.

The bill passed the Senate with a 47-1 vote. It now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.

Jacob Burbrink

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