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California’s hemp-versus-marijuana clash intensifies

A California hemp bill that would provide a long-awaited green light for hemp-derived CBD products has cleared the lower chamber – but the progress has set up a cannabis clash in the world’s largest state market.

The bill easily passed through the California Assembly and awaits action in the state Senate. It would legalize the distribution and sale of hemp-derived CBD in the state as an ingredient in foods, beverages and dietary supplements.

But it would ban smokable hemp and limit hemp-derived THC isomers such as delta-8 THC to marijuana dispensaries.

Some hemp operators are hoping the measure passes after years of delay. They point out that California’s health department says CBD can’t go in food and drinks, limiting opportunities for hemp operators.

But smokable hemp producers say the bill would wipe out the only truly profitable segment of the industry, while marijuana groups  are concerned that the legislation doesn’t hold hemp-derived CBD to the same standards as state-legal marijuana, and would increase competition for their products.

The pending bill would “make clear that a product is not adulterated or misbranded due to the inclusions of hemp,” according to the U.S. Hemp Roundtable, an advocacy group and proponent of the legislation.

If signed into law, the legislation “will open an important retail market for CBD consumers,” the group states.

To Read The Rest Of This Article By Laura Drotleff on Hemp Industry Daily

Published: June 14, 2021

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