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Selling Hemp Flower: Legalities and Guidelines for Retailers

December 14, 2020

Elevated Trading is on a mission to help retailers understand the laws that govern the hemp industry. Legislators have introduced measures to legalize the manufacturing and selling of hemp flower — a prized marvel. This article is meant as a general guide. Always consult with an attorney for specific legal advice.

What are the legalities of acquiring and selling hemp flower?

From a historical angle, hemp has long been considered an outlaw — strictly prohibited by federal law.

Hemp prohibition commenced in the 1920s and was categorized as a drug by the mid-1930s. Surprisingly enough — much of the disrepute surrounding hemp was contrived by an establishment that hemp threatened the economic viability of competing products.

With a new generation of theorists, hemp has been revived as more than an important asset, but one that could instill enormous value into the world. There are regulations that must be obeyed to legally buy and sell CBD hemp in the United States. To meet these federal regulations, hemp must contain less than 0.3 percent THC.

Elevated Trading Insider Tip

For CBD companies, it is important to establish a working relationship with a cannabis law firm as early as possible. Invest in a retainer so you have quick access to legal representation and guidance throughout your business journey. Spend the time educating the law firm about your products and go to market strategy so they are familiar with your business should issues arise in the future. It's imperative that you protect your business and any proprietary information that you have worked so hard to build.

What is in the 2014 Farm Bill and 2018 Farm Bill?

The 2014 Farm Bill allowed ‘institutions of higher education’ and state agriculture departments to grow hemp under a pilot program if state law permitted it. The 2014 Farm Bill also established a definition of industrial hemp, officially setting the THC threshold in the U.S. at 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis. At the time, all cannabis varieties were considered Schedule I controlled substances, and though the 2014 bill allowed hemp to be grown, certain aspects of production were still subject to Drug Enforcement Administration oversight, including the importation of seeds for cultivation.

The 2018 Farm Bill legalized the production of hemp as an agricultural product, ultimately eliminating it from the list of controlled substances — paving the way for the wholly legal cultivation, possession, sale and distribution of the hemp plant. The 2018 bill listed hemp as a protected product under crop insurance and directed the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation board to modernize the process for acquiring hemp policies.

The bill, which was championed by Senate Majority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) with strong bi-partisan backing, also allocates to states and Indian tribes the broad authority to control and limit the production and sale of hemp and hemp products within their borders.

As of 2019, forty-eight states and Puerto Rico considered over 200 bills related to hemp production and regulation in 2019. At least six states — Connecticut, Georgia, Louisiana, Iowa, Ohio, and Texas —passed legislation to create state programs. South Dakota passed House Bill 1191, which the governor vetoed. Other states, such as Florida, Kansas, Oklahoma and Maryland, endorsed legislation to expand or rename existing programs. New Hampshire established a study committee (House Bill 459). Mississippi also formed a task force to research the cultivation of hemp (House Bill 1547).

To learn more, check your local jurisdiction and examine your business plan with an attorney who knows local CBD laws.

Despite the legal challenges, the most important aspect of developing a successful hemp-derived CBD retail store, is to be as transparent as possible so that your consumers understand the value of your product and trust its quality. There are immense opportunities to grow and sell hemp flower. Elevate!

All Elevated Trading wholesale hemp products displayed on the site contain a total delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration that does not exceed three-tenths percent (0.3%) on a dry weight basis. Not intended for use by persons under the age of 21. Consult a physician before using this product. Do not use if pregnant, lactating, suffering from a medical condition(s), or taking other medication(s).

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