Hemp Industries Association & Kentucky Hemp Industry Council File Petition with Drug Enforcement Administration to Remove Hemp from Controlled Substances Act

31 May 2016 12:30 PM | Deleted user

Press Conference to Discuss De-Schedule of Hemp to Occur June 1st

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Hemp Industries Association (HIA), a non-profit trade association consisting of hundreds of hemp businesses, in conjunction with the Kentucky Hemp Industry Council, will file a petition with the Drug Enforcement Administration to remove industrial hemp plants from the schedules established under the Controlled Substance Act, on June 1 2016. The petition cites language from the 2014 Farm Bill, which defined hemp as distinct from ‘marijuana’ by establishing the standard that hemp contains no more than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol or THC on a dry weight basis. A press conference will be held Wednesday, June 1, from Noon to 2pm at Elizabeth’s on L, to discuss this petition and its objective, as well as Hemp History Week, recent progress made toward commercial hemp farming in the U.S., and the environmental, nutritional and economic benefits of hemp cultivation, followed by a hemp luncheon.

What:

Press Conference and Hemp Luncheon

Who:

Hemp Industries Association and Kentucky Hemp Industry Council

When:

Wednesday, June 1st from Noon – 2pm

Where:

Elizabeth’s on L – 1341 L St. NW, Washington, DC 20005

*All interested media are welcome to attend.

Currently, all forms of cannabis are classified as a Schedule I substance—meaning they are controlled to a greater degree than either cocaine or most methamphetamines. The CSA treats industrial hemp plants the same as drug marijuana plants solely because they are of the same species, even though industrial hemp has no potential whatsoever for drug abuse.  Despite progress toward hemp farming legalization made in the 2014 Farm Bill, which permitted hemp cultivation agricultural pilot projects in states that have legalized cultivation of industrial hemp, hemp cultivation remains prohibited at the federal level. If successful, the petition would remove from Schedule I industrial hemp plants, defined as cannabis plants having no greater than 0.3% THC by dry weight. To read the petition, please visit: https://www.thehia.org/resources/Documents/Legal/HIA-Deschedule-Petition-DEA_6-1-2016.pdf.

“Hemp is a crop with deep roots in American history dating back to some of our first farmers including Presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson,” stated Eric Steenstra, Executive Director of the Hemp Industries Association. “Hemp has no place on the schedule of controlled substances and it is time for DEA to de-schedule hemp and allow states to once again regulate hemp farming just like any other crop.”

“As Kentucky attempts to reemerge as a global leader in the industrial hemp industry, we are grateful to our political leaders in DC such as Senator Mitch McConnell and Rep. Thomas Massie for advancing federal law so dramatically in the past few years,” stated Jonathan Miller, former Kentucky State Treasurer and current counsel to the Kentucky Hemp Industry Council. “But for the U.S. hemp industry to truly advance, the crop must be de-scheduled.  That’s why businesses, farmers and our industry so strongly support HIA’s critical petition effort.”

The HIA estimates that approximately 3,997 acres of hemp crops were planted during 2015 in the U.S. This hemp cultivation is legal in 28 states, which have lifted restrictions on hemp farming and may license farmers to grow hemp in accordance with Sec. 7606 of the Farm Bill, the Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research amendment. Read the full text of Sec. 7606 on the Vote Hemp website: http://www.votehemp.com/PDF/Pages_from_farm0127.pdf.

In January of 2015, a proposed Industrial Hemp Farming Act was introduced in both the House and Senate, H.R. 525 and S. 134 respectively. If passed, the bill would remove all federal restrictions on the cultivation of industrial hemp, and remove its classification as a Schedule I controlled substance. Currently, in 29 states, hemp may be cultivated either commercially or in agricultural pilot programs  per Sec. 7606 of the Farm Bill, including Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia.

The HIA is grateful to Courtney Moran and Andy Kerr for advising the industry to refile a descheduling petition.

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The Hemp Industries Association (HIA) represents the interests of the hemp industry and encourages the research and development of new hemp products.  More information about hemp’s many uses and hemp advocacy may be found at www.TheHIA.org and www.VoteHemp.com.  DVD Video News Release featuring footage of hemp farming in other countries is available upon request by contacting Lauren Stansbury at 402-540-1208.


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