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2018 Farm Bill Expires—Hemp Regulation Uncertain
2018 Farm Bill Expires. On September 30, 2023, the 2018 Farm Bill—which is updated and passed every five years—expired. This pivotal legislation is notable for having spawned a multi-billion dollar industry by legalizing hemp production in the United States. In addition, this regulatory oversight helped popularized alternative ("alt") cannabinoids beyond delta-9 THC, including delta-8, delta-10, and HHC.
The 2018 Farm Bill "led to subsequent booms for hemp growers and manufacturers: First with CBD and then with intoxicating 'novel' cannabinoids."
The replacement Farm Bill, which was supposed to be in the form of the 2023 Farm Bill, may not arrive until 2024, according to a leading Senate Republican. This would only extend the legal and economic uncertainty that currently plagues American hemp and alt cannabinoid companies. The situation may require the 2018 Farm Bill to be extended for an additional year.
2018 Farm Bill Expires
Delays in passing legislation due to the three-week lack of a speaker in the U.S. House of Representatives in October may prevent the 2023 Farm Bill from being considered and potentially passed before the end of the year.
Arkansas Senator John Boozeman, who serves on the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee, said there may not be enough time to pass the new Farm Bill before the end-of-year deadline. However, such legislation and administrative delays are not uncommon. In fact, the 2013 Farm Bill was not formally passed until February 2014.
"Hemp-derived alternatives to cannabis-sourced delta-9 THC have received wide criticism."
Hemp-derived alternatives to cannabis-sourced delta-9 THC have received wide criticism, particularly from state-regulated cannabis companies that claim "hemp-derived alternatives—sold online or at unscrupulous merchants without age verification or quality controls—thwart legalization's promise of safe, tested product," according to MJ Biz Daily. In response, several states have restricted or outright banned hemp-derived products.
Learn more about the 2018 Farm Bill here.
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