The recent federal memo also pertains to hemp-derived CBD.
Pointing out open questions about what a legal hemp industry means, the USDA issued an executive memorandum that clears up a central point of contention: whether licensed growers may transport their hemp across state lines and access a broader national supply chain. (See memorandum here)
The short answer is yes, the 2018 Farm Bill provisions allow this.
The USDA’s May 28 memo outlines a path toward federal implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill. The full slate of rules has not yet been developed; rather, the department has been issuing piecemeal guidancein the early days of the legal U.S. hemp industry. Once the USDA outlines a full, formal set of hemp production regulations, states will be barred from stopping any hemp shipments in the U.S.
In the meantime, though: “States and Indian tribes also may not prohibit the interstate transportation or shipment of hemp lawfully produced under the 2014 Farm Bill,” according to the memo, allowing such transport to begin now.
As reported earlier, hemp production will be legal under three auspices: USDA licensure, state or tribal licensure or a 2014 Farm Bill-sanctioned hemp research pilot program (many of which continue to function while the USDA finalizes its impending hemp rules). State and tribal laws may be more stringent than whatever regulations the USDA delivers later this year.
But as Boise State Public Radio points out, the transition into a newly legal hemp era has not been smooth. Idaho State Police report that the law enforcement office will “continue to make arrests and confiscate hemp while enforcing Idaho law.”
The news comes as three men face felony drug trafficking charges for transporting hemp through Idaho (running a shipment from an Oregon grower to a Colorado manufactu