According to Greg Garrison at AL.com, several farmers in Alabama are planting their first legal hemp since 1937. The plantation is a part of the State of Alabama’s Industrial Hemp Research Pilot Program. After the federal law legalized hemp derived cannabinoid and removed it from the list of Controlled Substances, farmers have been seeking legal permission in the form of a license for growing and selling cannabinoid.
Hunter McBrayer, commodity division director for the Alabama Farmers Federation said that many farmers are trying to grow hemp to see an opportunity for a profitable new crop that could tap into the CBD oil market. Since the legalization of CBD, several companies, organizations and start ups have created CBD based products for the consumers.
From beauty and wellness to health and fitness, CBD can now be seen in a wide variety of products that are being sold at the front shelves of stores and even restaurants. CBD infused oil, tincture, cream, lotion, pills, gummy bears, burgers, beer, chocolates, coffee are some of the most commonly found CBD products in the U.S. now.
Though the U.S. Food and Drug Administration prohibits CBD infused edibles, restaurants and companies continue to create and sell them. The agency held a public meeting on May 31 with stakeholders, law enforcement officials, retailers, business leaders and consumers to discuss about the safe usage of CBD.
It is yet to declare a final statement or their verdict from the meeting, however hopes remain high amongst people who had been waiting for this since long. Despite of the confusion in the market and the unregulated structure of CBD products, FDA officials say it would take a significant amount of time to form a regulatory framework or put any rule into action.
The FDA even issued warning letters to 3 companies who marketed their products as a treatment to cancer. Although CBD had been reportedly an effective drug in treating severe ailments such as epilepsy, Alzheimer’s and cancer, there is no internationally recognized study that supports these claims.
CBD is basically an anti-inflammatory and non-psychoactive compound which helps reduce stress, anxiety, depression, insomnia, pain, swelling, inflammation and many such conditions. CBD is derived from hemp, a cannabis genus plant which also contains THC or tetra hydro cannabinoid. Unlike the CBD, THC is a psychoactive compound which alters the state of mind and produce hallucinations if consumed in a large amount.
When a user smokes pot or weed and feels “high”, it is the THC reacting in the brain and changing its chemicals. The federal law allows CBD products with a maximum concentration of 0.3% THC per unit. While some rejoice for the legalization of CBD, others worry about the potent effect of CBD on them.
Lawmakers express concern over CBD infused food and drinks which are attractive to consumers, especially the younger generation. Officials plead their state government to ban products such as CBD infused gummies and chocolates which could adversely affect kids and make them “addicts”.
Till now there have been no major cases reported regarding the side effects of CBD, it is a drug which mostly suits everyone. But it is recommended to consult a medical expert or a physician before consuming CBD as it can interfere with other prescription drugs.
CBD is now widely available at pharmacies, stores, restaurants, supermarkets and almost every other place you’ll see in the United States. While some states have gone with the flow and allowed CBD as per the federal law standards, others have continued to follow their old laws which prohibit CBD.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said that passing marijuana legalization before the end of the legislative session is one of their top 10 priorities. He said that efforts to legalize cannabis have been stalled in part due to the dynamic political effects where the legalization failed terribly in New Jersey.
Legalizing cannabis for medicinal use is bigger than what most people think. Ensuring that the country remains healthy, addiction-free and safe is not an easy task, any loophole could trigger a wave of rebels and people going haywire with the effects of a drug which was envisioned to be dangerous by many, but was legalized whatsoever.
It is highly important to create and work on a regulatory framework that allows legal CBD to be grown, processed, packaged and sold effectively without disturbing the peace amongst the public. As for Alabama, the news has created a buzz all over and is almost a sigh of relief for people who had been looking to expand in the farming domain or were facing issues with other crops.