US (NC): Duplin farmers can continue to grow hemp

Recently the state passed legislation that will keep farmers and small business owners in the hemp industry legally in operation. “We’ve been working on this issue for a while now, and I’m happy to see it cross the finish line. There were some hiccups, but the farmers were always the top priority of the Senate as we took steps to keep hemp legal in North Carolina,” said Senator Brent Jackson.

Senate Bill 455 removed hemp and hemp products from the state’s controlled substances list. Hemp and its products, like CBD, contain a concentration of 0.3% of the delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, which is the chemical that makes users high. Cannabis still remains illegal. According to NC House Representative Jimmy Dixon, early in the process, they learned about the need to fix the transition of hemp from a state permit to a federal permit.

“The House preferred to handle the fix with a stand-alone bill. Thus, we passed SB455 with 26 Republicans voting ‘no’--I voted ‘yes’--and sent it to the Senate on June 2, 2022,” said Rep. Dixon. “The House received The Farm Act from the Senate with the hemp fix included. We held a caucus to discuss the Farm Act with sixty-one of sixty-nine members present. Forty-six House caucus members asked me to remove the hemp fix from the Farm Act since we already sent the Senate the exact same fix they included in their version of the Farm Act,” said Rep. Dixon. “I immediately went and informed Senator Jackson about the caucus request of forty-six Republicans, and we removed the hemp provision from the Farm Act and passed it.”

June was a tense month for hemp growers as they waited for a decision on the permanent legalization of hemp and hemp products, had it not passed, it would have left many in limbo and potentially facing charges if hemp became illegal.

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