In the US, the Washington State House of Representatives has given approval to legislation that would explicitly legalise hemp, voting to pass the bill 98-0.
House Bill 2064 would exclude “industrial hemp from the definitions of “controlled substance” and “marijuana” for purposes of the uniform controlled substances act.”
If passed by the senate, this would make hemp legal in the same was as any other agricultural commodity e.g. corn or tomatoes, meaning that anybody would be free to grow hemp crops without registering with Washington State.
Marijuana and industrial hemp are seen differently by the US Government, and industrial hemp has already been given a small window of legal status in the US under the 2014 Farm Bill (Sec. 7606) which states:
“…an institution of higher education…or a state department of agriculture may grow or cultivate industrial hemp if…the industrial hemp is grown or cultivated for purposes of research conducted under an agricultural pilot program or other agricultural or academic research…”
The farm bill also established a statutory definition of “industrial hemp” as the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of such plant with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of not more than 0.3% on a dry weight basis.
Under this new bill, prospective hemp growers in Washington would no longer need to register for a license to do so.
Before this bill is enacted it must first be passed to the Senate before going to the Washington state Governor Jay Inslee.
We will keep you updated with any developments.