22 Fiscal Year Agricultural Appropriations Bill: A good sign for the hemp industry
On June 29, the House Appropriations Committee ( Committee) Issued a draft bill for funding of agriculture, rural development, food and drug administration and related agencies for fiscal year 2022 ( 22 Fiscal Year Agricultural Appropriations Act), together with its Committee report, Which provides some promising regulations and instructions, which will greatly benefit the cannabis industry.
The following is an overview of the provisions in the bill and the instructions contained in the committee report:
Activities of the 2014 Farm Act (Article 741)
The bill clarifies the legality of hemp grown, processed, transported, sold, and converted into products under the 2014 Farm Act, and states that such hemp will still be legally used for commercial purposes after the 2014 Farm Act expires.
Extension of the 2014 Farm Act (Section 766)
The bill proposes to extend the 2014 Farm Bill to January 1, 2023-the deadline is currently set at January 1, 2022.This proposed extension is needed because the vast majority (75% to be precise) of all permitted land is subject to state plans under the 2014 Farm Act and implemented by states that strongly oppose the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Final rule Or face the major challenge of amending regulations to meet these requirements. Providing state regulators with more time to transition the industry to 2018 authorities should help reduce the negative impact of the USDA final rule on the industry.
THC limit Review
In its report, the committee expressed concern that the levels of THC allowed in cannabis “may be arbitrary and impose a burden on cannabis producers without scientific support”. indeed, We have explained This threshold can be traced back to 1976, when Canadian horticulturists Ernest Small and Arthur Cronquist published an article entitled Practical and natural classification of cannabis, Where the author explained:
“It should be noted that we arbitrarily adopted a concentration of 0.3% delta-9 THC (dry weight basis) in the young, vigorous leaves of relatively mature plants as a guide to distinguish the two types of plants.”
To solve this problem, the committee instructed the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to “study and report to Congress whether there is a scientific basis for the current restrictions.” Cannabis contains 0.3% THC, and when necessary Alternative levels are recommended at the time. “
Admission to the colored community
The Committee also expressed concern about the drug felony ban imposed by the 2018 Farm Bill, which has a disproportionate impact on communities of color, thereby creating barriers to entry into the industry for those people targeted by drug policies. Therefore, the committee directed the USDA to determine these barriers to entry and make recommendations on how to ensure that communities of color have equal opportunities and opportunities to participate in this emerging market.
Cannabis extract conditioning
The committee report also resolved the inconsistency between the final US Department of Agriculture rules and the regulation of hemp production. DEA Provisional Final RuleThe committee stated in its report that “Congress intends to expand the definition of cannabis to include derivatives, extracts, and cannabinoids in order to avoid criminalizing cannabis processing,” and it understands that cannabis extracts in processing may temporarily exceed 0.3% THC threshold before packaging and selling as a finished product. In view of this, the committee instructed the USDA to coordinate directly with the DEA to provide guidance and information on intermediate extraction materials to the industry.
As these proposed amendments and instructions imply, the committee appears determined to establish a legal and regulatory framework to ensure the success of the cannabis industry. For this, we applaud its members.