News

  • 31 May 2016 12:30 PM | Anonymous

    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.

    #   #   #

    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.


  • 09 May 2016 8:00 AM | Anonymous

    Hemp Foods and Body Care Retail Market in U.S. Achieves 10.4% Growth in 2015

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Hemp Industries Association (HIA), a non-profit trade association consisting of hundreds of hemp businesses, has released final estimates of the size of the 2015 U.S. retail market for hemp products. Data from market research supports an estimate of total retail sales of hemp food, supplements and body care products in the United States at $283 million.  Sales of popular hemp items like non-dairy milk, shelled seed, soaps and lotions have continued to increase, complemented by successful hemp cultivation pilot programs in several states, and increasing grassroots pressure to allow hemp to be grown domestically on a commercial scale once again for U.S. processors and manufacturers.  The HIA has also reviewed sales of clothing, auto parts, building materials and various other products in collaboration with the Hemp Business Journal, and estimates the total retail value of hemp products sold in the U.S. in 2015 to be at least $573 million.

    Of this $573 million hemp market, the HIA estimates that hemp foods constituted 16% ($90 million); personal care products constituted 26% ($147 million); textiles constituted 17% ($95 million); supplements constituted 8% ($47 million); hemp derived cannabidiol or CBD products constituted 11% ($65 million); industrial applications such as car parts constituted 20% ($116 million); and other consumer products such as paper construction materials accounted for the remaining 2% of the market. 


    The sales data on hemp foods and body care, collected by market research firm SPINS, was obtained from natural and conventional retailers, excluding Whole Foods Market, Costco and certain other key establishments, who do not provide sales data — and thus it significantly underestimates actual sales.  According to the SPINS data, combined U.S. hemp food and body care sales grew in the sampled stores by 10.4% or $9,269,376, over the previous year ending December 31, 2015 to a total of just over $89,183,460. 

    According to SPINS figures, sales in conventional retailers grew by 11.25% in 2015, while sales in natural retailers grew by 9.43%. Indeed, the combined growth of hemp retail sales in the U.S. continues steadily: annual natural and conventional market percent growth has progressed from 7.3% (2011), to 16.5% (2012), to 24% (2013), 21.2% (2014), to 10.4% in 2015.

    As the hemp industry in the U.S. continues to develop, more detailed data has become available through various reporting channels. Previously, the HIA had calculated the size and growth of the hemp market in the U.S. based on approximations of sales in the categories of textiles, auto parts, building materials and other products, in addition to known data on the sales of hemp foods and body care. Now that more specific information is available, the HIA has updated its formula to reflect a more conservative, but more accurate estimate for the hemp market for 2015. Hence, the shift from the 2014 figure of $620 million to the 2015 estimate of $573 million does not demonstrate a decrease in the actual hemp market; rather it reflects a more precise means of estimating the actual industry for 2015. The data for 2015 that assert 10.4% growth from 2014 to 2015 demonstrate a strong rate of market increase for hemp products in food and body care.

    The HIA estimates the total retail value of all hemp products sold in the U.S. to be at least $573 million for 2015,” says Eric Steenstra, Executive Director of the HIA.  “To date, 28 states have passed legislation that allows hemp farming per provisions set forth in the 2014 Farm Bill, and new businesses representing all industrial fields from foods to car manufacturing are looking to American farmers to meet the growing demand for hemp. Entrepreneurs, manufacturers, farmers, consumers are all on board to expand the hemp market. We need Congress to pass federal legislation to allow commercial hemp farming nationally, for this ripe industry to finally be able to bloom,” continues Steenstra.

    The HIA estimates that approximately 3,997 acres of hemp crops were planted in 7 states 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, The Industrial Hemp Farming Act was introduced in both the House and Senate, H.R. 525 and S. 134 respectively. If passed, the legislation would remove all federal restrictions on the cultivation of industrial hemp, and remove its classification as a Schedule 1 controlled substance. Currently, 28 states may grow hemp per Sec. 7606 of the Farm Bill, including 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, Washington, West Virginia and Virginia.

    #   #   #

    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.

  • 19 Feb 2016 8:30 AM | Erin Pully (Administrator)

    Washington, DC – Hemp Industries Association (HIA), the non-profit North American hemp trade association, has published its statement in response to recent warning letters sent by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to manufacturers of CBD products, regarding mis-labeling of drug claims on said products.  Available on the FDA website, the letters explain that per the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act, CBD products may not be marketed as drugs, meaning manufacturers cannot make claims regarding CBD products’ efficacy in the cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of disease. Furthermore, the FDA asserts that cannabidiol products may not be marketed as supplements, because ‘new drug’ consideration is currently pending for CBD. To view these letters in their entirety, dated February 4, 2016, please visit: http://www.fda.gov/ICECI/EnforcementActions/WarningLetters/.

    It is the position of the HIA that legal hemp products containing CBD were marketed as foods and dietary supplements long before cannabidiol formulations were submitted to the FDA for testing as a ‘new drug.’ As such, CBD products are exempt from laws that preclude CBDs from product status as dietary supplements pending ‘new drug’ approval by the FDA. Though none of the companies in receipt of these warning letters are current or former HIA members, the HIA urges these CBD product manufacturers to revise their product labeling and marketing such that no medical claims are made. 

    “There is great potential for the CBD market to expand in the U.S., but we need to move forward as an industry on a path that defines cannabidiol products as dietary supplements, much like multi-vitamins and herbal products,” said Eric Steenstra, Executive Director of the Hemp Industries Association. 

    Unlike FDA approved pharmaceutical drugs, which are new compounds developed and patented by drug companies and go through rigorous clinical trials before reaching the market, and can only be administered with a prescription; cannabidiol is a botanically derived, floral extract that exists organically in nature. The Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 explicitly defines ‘supplements’ as an extract of a botanical. As such, the HIA maintains that CBD products are indeed supplements, and that attempts by the FDA, or other agencies, to discourage lawful manufacturing and marketing of these products demonstrates unjust bias toward the hemp industry. 

    To read the HIA’s joint statement regarding best practices for labeling and manufacturing of medicinal cannabis and hemp products, please visit: http://thehia.org/HIAhemppressreleases/3236544

    #  #  #

    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 or lauren@votehemp.com
  • 15 Feb 2016 11:00 PM | Anonymous

    The University of Kentucky has published the results of its 2015 hemp field trials. Research results are available at the UK web site: http://hemp.ca.uky.edu/.


  • 17 Nov 2015 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    Conference’s Success Underscores Growing Entrepreneurism, Technological Innovation and Expansion of Hemp Industry in U.S and Abroad 

    Lexington, KY – Hemp Industries Association (HIA), a non-profit trade association consisting of hundreds of hemp businesses and farmers, hosted its 22nd annual conference during September 27 through September 29, 2015, in downtown Lexington, KY. Attended by HIA business and farmer members, non-members, as well as national media and leading political figures, the 2015 HIA conference was sold-out for the first time in the history of HIA.  Speakers included James Comer, Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner, and expert speakers David Mitlin, Professor at Clarkson University, David Williams, Agronomist at University of Kentucky, Mike Fata, CEO of Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods, Ethan Russo, MD, Medical Director at Phytecs,, plus many others. Presentations ranged from such topics as the expansion of the hemp industry and market in North America, new technological applications of hemp fiber in super-capacitor batteries, hemp home building methods, best practices in hemp agronomy, CBD products, and legislative progress and remaining challenges in the U.S. and internationally.

    Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer received the Vote Hemp Leadership Award at the conference. Other award recipients include Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) who received the Legislator of the Year Award; Craig Lee, recipient of the HIA Lifetime Achievement Award; and Coleman Hemphill, who was honored as Vote Hemp Activist of the Year.

    The third day of the conference concluded with a Hemp Farm Tour, during which participants toured fiber, grain and CBD hemp crops at the University of Kentucky, the Gilkison Farm and the Graves Farm managed by HIA member Andy Graves of Atalo Holdings.

    The success of the conference demonstrates both the growing interest in industrial hemp worldwide, as well as the leadership of the Hemp Industries Association. Founded in 1994, the HIA continues to grow in membership and expand its work to fulfill its mission of facilitating exchange of information between agriculturists, manufacturers, distributors and retailors; maintaining and defending the integrity of hemp products; advocating for socially and environmentally responsibly business practices; and educating the public about the benefits of industrial hemp. Exceeding $620 million in retail sales, according to SPINS data and HIA estimates, hemp products are demonstrating significant market growth; with 21.2% year over year growth for the category of hemp foods and body care products alone.  Currently, 27 states have defined industrial hemp as distinct from ‘marijuana’ and have removed barriers to its production.   

    For more information about the conference, including a recap and photo album, please visit: http://www.thehia.org/blog

    #  #  #

    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.organd 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 or lauren@votehemp.com
  • 20 Aug 2015 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    Conference to Feature Expert Speakers, Hemp Exhibits, Hemp Farm Tour, and Focus on Expanding the Hemp Industry throughout North America 

    Lexington, KY – Hemp Industries Association (HIA), a non-profit trade association consisting of hundreds of hemp businesses and farmers, will host its annual conference Sunday, September 27 through Tuesday September 29, at the Hilton Hotel in downtown Lexington, KY. The three-day conference will feature keynote speaker James Comer, Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner, and expert speakers David Mitlin, Professor at Clarkson University, David Williams, Agronomist at University of Kentucky, Mike Fata, CEO of Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods, Ethan Russo, MD, Medical Director at Phytecs, John Roulac, CEO of Nutiva, plus many others. Focusing on the expansion of the hemp industry and market in North America, the conference will also feature hemp exhibits, networking opportunities, and a hemp farm tour.

    WHAT: Hemp Industries Association 22nd Annual Conference

    WHEN: Sunday, September 27–Tuesday September 29, 2015

    WHERE: Hilton Hotel Downtown, 369 West Vine Street, Lexington, KY 40507

    Held for the first time in Kentucky, the 22nd annual conference occurs at a bright moment in hemp history, as hemp is cultivated in numerous research projects and farms throughout the state. Exceeding $620 million in retail sales, according to SPINS data and HIA estimates, hemp products are demonstrating significant market growth; with 21.2% year over year growth for the category of hemp foods and body care products alone. Currently, 26 states have defined industrial hemp as distinct from ‘marijuana’ and have removed barriers to its production. Since its introduction in January of 2015, the Industrial Hemp Farming Act, S. 134, has garnered 9 co-sponsors, including Senators Mitch McConnell (R-­‐KY), and Rand Paul (R-­‐KY).

    #  #  #

    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.organd 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 or lauren@votehemp.com


  • 01 Jun 2015 8:00 AM | Anonymous

    Spring Hemp Plantings, Hemp Home Building Courses & Grassroots Events Planned Across the Country to Restore Industrial Hemp Farming in the U.S.

    WASHINGTON, DC – The 6th annual Hemp History Week campaign began today, bringing over 1,400 events including documentary film screenings, cooking demonstrations, retail promotions, educational outreach, spring hemp plantings and hemp home building courses to the public—all aimed to catalyze movement on the issue of lifting the federal ban on industrial hemp farming in the U.S. Organized by Hemp Industries Association (HIA) and Vote Hemp, Hemp History Week will be held June 1-7, 2015, with events occurring in all 50 states. Encouraged by federal support in Congress, with the Industrial Hemp Farming Act introduced in both the House and Senate in January 2015, the campaign’s theme Sow the Seed highlights spring plantings in states that have passed legislation legalizing industrial hemp farming, and encourages consumers to participate in our call for support among legislators to support industrial hemp farming and the growth of the hemp industry nationwide. To learn more about Hemp History Week, visit: www.HempHistoryWeek.com.

    Spring Hemp Plantings

    HIA and Vote Hemp have partnered with University of Kentucky’s College of Agriculture, to coordinate a hemp planting demonstration, to occur June 2, 2015, on the site of the university’s hemp pilot program fields. Throughout the country, farmers in states that have legalized the cultivation of industrial hemp will begin to plant this spring, and Hemp History Week is coordinating events to celebrate the return of hemp to the American agrarian landscape. Spring planting events will be open to both community and media attendance. An environmentally sustainable crop, industrial hemp does not require chemical inputs of pesticides and herbicides to flourish. As farmers open their hemp fields to the public, grassroots activists will offer educational events about industrial hemp—its history, agronomy, health and ecological benefits—as we join together to sow the seed.

    Farmer Spotlight

    Hemp History Week has launched a new aspect of the campaign this spring: Farmer Spotlight Interviews. Farmer Spotlights will document hemp history in-the-making, focusing on a prominent hemp farmer each month and interviewing the farmer regarding such topics as hemp agriculture practices, benefits of hemp farming, how they became interested to grow hemp, and other issues pertinent to hemp farming and hemp industry. To view our Farmer Spotlight series, visit the Hemp History section of the website: http://hemphistoryweek.com/hemp-history/u-s-hemp-farmers/.

    The Health Benefits of Hemp

    Among the fastest-growing categories in the natural foods industry, hemp seed is a rich source of Omega-3 and Omega-6 essential fatty acids (EFAs), providing both SDA and GLA, highly-digestible protein, and naturally-occurring vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin E and iron. An excellent source of dietary fiber, hemp seed is also a complete protein—meaning it contains all ten essential amino acids, with no enzyme inhibitors, making it more digestible by the human body.

    Hemp Building Courses

    HIA will organize a hemp home building course, in which members of the public will be invited to participate. The HIA Hemp Building Course will take place in Lexington, KY on June 26-28. Hemp structures are built with hempcrete— a natural material that is energy-efficient, non-toxic and resistant to mold, insects and fire, and which is more quickly renewable and sustainable than lumber. A multi-day course, these programs will cover contemporary construction methods and hands-on practical applications of working with hempcrete, including forming or shuttering, mixing and casting the hempcrete within a framed structure, as well as finishing with plasters and coloring. Students who complete the course will have the knowledge and skillset to pursue a hemp-building project of their own.

    Celebrity Endorsements

    Hemp History Week is endorsed by celebrities and high-profile wellness experts, including Dr. Andrew Weil, Alicia Silverstone, Phil Lempert, Ashley Koff R.D., Brendan Brazier, Elizabeth Kucinich, Ziggy Marley, Alexandra Jamieson, Dar Williams, Michael Franti, John Salley, Kevin Danaher, John Trudell, and Grammy award-winning band Ozomatli. For the 2015 campaign, musician Jason Mraz, and author Doug Fine have signed on as endorsers of Hemp History Week.

    Grassroots Engagement

    Over 275 grassroots events will take place nationwide, including an educational tour of college campuses, a restaurant program, film screenings of the documentary “Bringing It Home,” community outreach at farmers’ markets, state lobbying days, a letter writing campaign, spring plantings and other exciting engagement opportunities. Specific details for these Hemp History Week events are listed on the website: http://hemphistoryweek.com/events/.

    United in the Effort to Bring Back Industrial Hemp Farming

    An incredibly versatile crop, hemp fiber, oil seed and flowers are used for a myriad of products—including health foods, dietary supplements (e.g. CBDs), cosmetics and body care products, building materials, automobile parts, bio-composites, batteries, bio-fuel, textiles, paper and other products. Now in its sixth year, Hemp History Week is an industry-wide effort made possible by the support of the leading natural product brands known for manufacturing the highest quality hemp products. These HIA members and platinum sponsor brands include Daily Greens, Dr. Bronner’s, Living Harvest, Manitoba Harvest, Nature’s Path Foods and Nutiva, silver sponsor Himalania, and supporting sponsors The Wonder Seed, Satori Movement, and Just Hemp Foods.

    “Our line of hemp milks infused with green superfoods is a natural evolution from our core line of all-green cold-pressed juices. Hemp milk is the perfect plant-based milk alternative,” said Daily Greens founder, Shauna Martin. “Not only is it a complete protein with perfect proportions of Omegas 3 and 6, it is also high in iron and calcium. We are excited to participate in Hemp History Week in order to help educate folks about the rich nutritional benefits of hemp seeds and all the wonderful ways to consume hemp.”

    “Hemp is an integral component in our body care products, as the Omega-3 rich hemp oil provides moisturizing nourishment to the skin, and imparts luxurious smoothness to our soaps’ lather,” says David Bronner, President of Dr. Bronner’s, the top-selling brand of natural soap in the U.S.  “Dr. Bronner’s plans to source the twenty tons of hemp oil we use annually from American farmers, rather than import it from Canada, once the crop is legal and the infrastructure for hemp production is in place. Given the momentous progress made this past year, including the first legal hemp crops harvested in Colorado, Kentucky and Vermont since the 1940’s, we are determined to keep up the momentum on the issue in Congress so that 2015 lawmakers allow U.S. farmers to once again cultivate hemp.”

    “With the ever growing number of food allergies, hemp seeds are an easily digestible plant protein and an impressive source of all 10 essential amino acids,” says Dan Ratner of Tempt, which makes the #1 selling hempmilk, coconut hempmilk, hemp tofu, and brand new hemp yogurt. “Currently, we must import our hemp seed from Canada and Europe, which translates to higher consumer prices and an increased carbon footprint. We continue to push for better industrial hemp legislation and hope to one day purchase our hemp from U.S. farmers."

    "Here in Canada the legalization process started with research trials, so we are tremendously hopeful the same will be true in the U.S.," says Mike Fata – CEO & co-founder of Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods. "As the market for hemp food products grows, we need to source more hemp seed to meet the demand. Manitoba Harvest is eager to partner with U.S. farmers and has profitable production contracts waiting." 

    “Hemp seed is a nutritious superfood that Nature’s Path includes as a plant-based source of protein and fiber in a growing number of our foods – from snack bars to granolas, waffles and oatmeal,” attests Arran Stephens, co-founder and co-CEO of Nature’s Path Foods, North America’s largest organic breakfast and snack food company. “We’ve been cooking with hemp seeds for decades and are delighted to see the industry grow. We look forward to celebrating this important and versatile crop during Hemp History Week – a time to educate people on the benefits of embracing hemp; both in our farmlands and on our kitchen tables.”

    “More Americans are choosing organic foods. Nutiva is the leading producer of organic hemp products and we've seen our sales grow over 60% annually for the past 10 years,” said John Roulac, founder and CEO of Nutiva. “It’s vital we legalize the cultivation of hemp within the U.S. so we can source domestically grown hemp and support our American farmers.“   

    Legislative Progress and Challenges in 2015

    When the 2013 farm bill was signed into law in February of 2014, the hemp amendment to the farm bill, Sec. 7606 Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research, defined industrial hemp as distinct from marijuana, which is subject to prohibition per the Controlled Substances Act. This was an historic moment in the longstanding effort to legalize hemp as the act asserts that industrial hemp is not psychoactive, having less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol on a dry weight basis and therefore presenting no drug value.

    The bill further allows for states that have already legalized the crop to cultivate hemp within the parameters of state agriculture departments and research institutions. Read the full text of the Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research amendment on the Vote Hemp website: http://www.votehemp.com/PDF/Pages_from_farm0127.pdf.

    In defiance of clear Congressional intent regarding the legitimacy of industrial hemp for agriculture and industrial applications, the Drug Enforcement Administration has hindered attempts at progress made by agriculture departments in many states that have legalized industrial hemp farming, by refusing to grant permission for state licensing of potential hemp farmers and by not granting import permits for certified hemp seed.

    In January of 2015, The 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 1 controlled substance.

    Despite contradictory actions among federal authorities, the number of states that have pro-hemp legislation continues to increase. Currently, 23 states may grow hemp per Sec. 7606 of the Farm Bill, including California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia.

    # # #

    Hemp History Week, June 1–7, 2015, is an industry-wide initiative of the Hemp Industries Association (HIA) and Vote Hemp.  The HIA is a non-profit trade group representing hemp companies, researchers, farmers and supporters.  Vote Hemp is a national, single-issue, non-profit advocacy group founded in 2000 by members of the hemp industry to remove barriers to industrial hemp farming in the U.S. through education, legislation and advocacy.  For further information, please visit www.TheHIA.org and www.VoteHemp.com.


  • 27 Mar 2015 10:00 AM | Anonymous

    Industry Leaders Advocate Best Practices for Regulation, Labeling and Manufacturing of Medicinal Cannabis and Hemp Products

    SILVER SPRING, MD - The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) Cannabis Committee, in coordination with Americans for Safe Access (ASA), and the Hemp Industries Association (HIA), announces the release of a joint statement advocating for implementation of best practices for the regulation of consumable, topical, and inhalant cannabis and hemp-derived products to ensure quality and consumer safety.  These best practices were developed with the input of numerous industry experts and establish common language and defined terms for the transparent and accurate labeling of these products to support responsible commerce and informed use of the cannabis plant.

    AHPA, ASA and HIA will be promoting these best practices at the 3rd Annual National Medical Cannabis Unity Conference being held March 27-31, in Washington, DC.

    Recommendations for plant part identification 

    The AHPA Cannabis Committee has established a policy that lawfully-marketed products consisting of or including Cannabis spp. ingredients that are intended for oral ingestion, topical application, or inhalation be labeled to identify the part of the Cannabis plant from which the ingredient is derived (e.g., seed oil, flower extract, or extract of aerial parts). This policy does not apply to parts of the Cannabis plant provided to consumers in unprocessed and recognizable forms.

    "Today's hemp food and body care companies implement good manufacturing practices and adhere to established standards for labeling," noted Eric Steenstra, executive director of the HIA. "In the best interest of consumers, it's vitally important for leading industry associations and manufacturers to work together to clarify and implement guidelines for all hemp and cannabis products."

    Regulatory recommendations 

    The AHPA Cannabis Committee has developed regulatory recommendations in the form of best practices addressing the operational stages of cannabis production and distribution: cultivation and processing; manufacturing and related operations; laboratory practice; and dispensing. These recommendations are applicable to any operation lawfully producing and/or distributing cannabis or industrial hemp consumable, topical, or inhalant products that are not already governed by federal regulations. ASA and HIA members contributed to the development of these recommendations as well.

    The AHPA Cannabis Committee, ASA, and the HIA support the regulatory trends toward mandatory product testing and adoption of other product safety regulations in states currently implementing medical marijuana programs. 

    "Regulators seeking to enhance cannabis product quality can adopt and implement these recommendations, as well as the product quality guidelines found in the American Herbal Pharmacopeia (AHP) Cannabis Monograph," stated Michael McGuffin, president of AHPA. "AHPA is conducting outreach encouraging all medical cannabis states to update their laws and regulations accordingly to include product safety and quality considerations."

    Cannabis companies are volunteering to adjust to these market demands as well. 

    "Cannabis companies are encouraged to participate in ASA's Patient Focused Certification (PFC) program as a way to independently demonstrate to consumers that these guidelines have been integrated into their production processes," explained Steph Sherer, ASA executive director. "The PFC program criteria draw from both the AHPA Cannabis Committee recommendations and the AHP Cannabis Monograph to foster consistency across the industry."

    "This is an exciting time for the cannabis industry; tremendous progress has been made in the past few years and the industry will continue to offer these products in a safe and transparent way that is imperative to its future," McGuffin added.

    The complete joint statement is available online.

    About American Herbal Products Association   
    The American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) is the national trade association and voice of the herbal and botanical products industry. AHPA is comprised of more than 300 domestic and foreign companies doing business as growers, processors, manufacturers, and marketers of herbs and herbal products, including foods, dietary supplements, cosmetics, and non-prescription drugs. Founded in 1982, AHPA's mission is to promote the responsible commerce of herbal products. 

    About Americans for Safe Access     
    With over 50,000 active members in all 50 states, Americans for Safe Access (ASA) is the largest national member-based organization of patients, medical professionals, scientists and concerned citizens promoting safe and legal access to cannabis for therapeutic use and research. ASA works to overcome political and legal barriers by creating policies that improve access to medical cannabis for patients and researchers through legislation, education, litigation, grassroots actions, advocacy and services for patients and the caregivers. 

    About Hemp Industries Association
    The Hemp Industries Association (HIA) is a non-profit trade association comprised of hundreds of hemp businesses, representing the interests of the hemp industry and encouraging the research and development of new hemp products. More information about the HIA can be found on the association's website: http://www.thehia.org.

    "Hemp" means industrial hemp as defined by Congress as "the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of such plant, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis." Sec. 7606 (b)(2) 

    # # #

    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 or lauren@wearemovementmedia.com .

    END

  • 12 Mar 2015 10:00 AM | Anonymous

    Hemp Foods and Body Care Retail Market in U.S. Achieves 21.2% Growth in 2014

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Hemp Industries Association (HIA), a non-profit trade association consisting of hundreds of hemp businesses, has released final estimates of the size of the 2014 U.S. retail market for hemp products. Data from market research supports an estimate of total retail sales of hemp food and body care products in the United States at $200 million. Sales of popular hemp items like non-dairy milk, shelled seed, soaps and lotions have continued to skyrocket against the backdrop of the new hemp research provision in the Farm Bill, and increasing grassroots pressure to allow hemp to be grown domestically on a commercial scale once again for U.S. processors and manufacturers. The HIA has also reviewed sales of clothing, auto parts, building materials and various other products, and estimates the total retail value of hemp products sold in the U.S. in 2014 to be at least $620 million.

    The sales data on hemp foods and body care, collected by market research firm SPINS, was obtained from natural and conventional retailers, excluding Whole Foods Market, Costco and certain other key establishments, who do not provide sales data — and thus it underestimates actual sales by a factor of at least two and a half. According to the SPINS data, combined U.S. hemp food and body care sales grew in the sampled stores by 21.2% or $14,020,239, over the previous year ending December 31, 2014 to a total of just over $80,042,540. According to SPINS figures, sales in conventional retailers grew by 26.8% in 2014, while sales in natural retailers grew by 16.3%. Indeed, the combined growth of hemp retail sales in the U.S. continues steadily, as annual natural and conventional market percent growth has progressed from 7.3% (2011), to 16.5% (2012), to 24% (2013), to 21.2 in 2014.

    "The HIA estimates the total retail value of all hemp products sold in the U.S. to be at least $620 million for 2014," says Eric Steenstra, Executive Director of the HIA. "Eleven new states have passed legislation and new businesses are rapidly entering the market now that American farmers in a handful of states are finally beginning to grow the crop legally. Challenges remain in the market and there is a need for Congress to pass legislation to allow farmers to grow hemp commercially in order for the market to continue its rapid growth," continues Steenstra.

    When the 2013 farm bill was signed into law in February of 2014, the hemp amendment to the farm bill, Sec. 7606 Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research, defined industrial hemp as distinct from marijuana in states where hemp is regulated under authorized hemp pilot programs. This was an historic moment in the longstanding effort to legalize hemp as the act asserts that industrial hemp is not psychoactive, having less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol on a dry weight basis and therefore presenting no drug value.

    The bill further allows for states that have already legalized the crop to cultivate hemp within the parameters of state agriculture departments and research institutions. In 2014, 1831 acres of hemp were licensed in Kentucky, Colorado and Vermont. Many licensees were unable to obtain seed in time to plant due to DEA seed import requirements. We estimate that approximately 125 acres of hemp crops were planted during 2014. Read the full text of the Legitimacy of Industrial Hemp Research amendment on the Vote Hemp website:http://www.votehemp.com/PDF/Pages_from_farm0127.pdf.

    In January of 2015, The 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 1 controlled substance. Currently, 21 states may grow hemp per Sec. 7606 of the Farm Bill, including California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and West Virginia.

    To download a PDF copy of this release, click here

    # # #

    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 or lauren@wearemovementmedia.com.

    END


  • 10 Jul 2014 10:00 AM | Anonymous

    HIA Statement Clarifies Production of Hemp Oil vs. Cannabidiol Products and Calls for Clarification in Marketplace among CBD Manufacturers

    WASHINGTON, DC — Hemp Industries Association, the non-profit North American hemp trade association, has published its position on the misbranding of cannabidiol (CBD) products as ‘hemp oil.’ The statement explains the difference between hemp oil and CBD extracts in terms of their respective uses and means of production; and furthermore, emphasizes the need for accurate language in the marketplace so that consumers are not misled.

    The position states, “Hemp oil is the common term for hemp seed oil, obtained by pressing hemp seeds that contain low levels of CBD, typically less than 25 parts per million (ppm). In contrast, CBD extracts are produced either directly from cannabis flowers that are up to 15% CBD (150,000 ppm), or indirectly as a co-product of the flowers and leaves that are mixed in with the stalks during hemp stalk processing for fiber.” Read the entirety of the HIA position on CBD extracts misbranded and marketed as ‘hemp oil’ on the HIA website: HIA-position-CBD-FINAL.pdf.

    The Drug Enforcement Administration attempted to ban import and commerce of hemp seed and oil food products in 2001, claiming these food products where controlled Schedule 1 substances. However, HIA successfully sued DEA, unequivocally establishing hemp seed, oil and protein as entirely legal to import, process, sell and consume in the U.S. Hemp oil is primarily consumed as a nutritional culinary oil, or used in body care products such as soaps, lotions and balms. Lauded for its high content of Omega 3 fatty acids, hemp oil is sold in natural product and health food retailers around the country, including Whole Foods, Costco and Sprouts grocers.

    “With hemp research and development pilot programs taking off this spring, and the hemp retail market growing at an incredible rate, it’s crucial that consumers and retailers alike understand the difference between hemp oil and CBD extracts,” says Eric Steenstra, Executive Director of Hemp Industries Association. “Our Hemp Industries Association position regarding this distinction calls on makers of CBD products to brand and market their products truthfully and clearly, so as to not further the confusion surrounding CBD products in the marketplace.”

    To date, thirty-nine states have introduced pro-hemp legislation and twenty-two have passed pro- hemp legislation. Sixteen states (California, Colorado, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia) have passed legislation allowing them to take immediate advantage of the industrial hemp research and pilot program provision, Section 7606, of the Farm Bill. Nine states (California, Colorado, Illinois, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Vermont and Virginia) have passed resolutions. Finally, nine states (Arkansas, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota and Vermont) have passed hemp study bills. However, despite state authorization to grow hemp, farmers in those states still risk raids by federal agents, prison time, and property and civil asset forfeiture if they plant the crop, due to the failure of federal policy to distinguish non-drug oilseed and fiber varieties of Cannabis (i.e., industrial hemp) from psychoactive drug varieties (i.e., “marihuana”).

    # # #

    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 andwww.VoteHemp.com.


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