Vancouver, WA—The Hemp Industries Association (HIA) has announced its support for the legal position that delta-8 THC, along with all other hemp-derived cannabinoids, were federally legalized by the 2018 Farm Bill, according to a press release. The position is based ona legal opiniondrafted by attorneys Rod Kight and Philip Snow of Kight Law.

In the press release, the HIA summarized its position as such:
  • The 2018 Farm Bill directed that hemp be regulated as an agricultural product, and defined ‘hemp’ to include its cannabinoids and tetrahydrocannabinoids. This is the governing law for the hemp industry.
  • Historically, natural cannabinoid consumption has not presented public health and safety risks like those presented by alcohol and tobacco; on the contrary, researchers are just beginning to explore the properties and potential health effects of hemp-extracted compounds. What is needed, therefore, is a regulatory framework for the production of those compounds that prioritizes consumer safety and scientific evidence.
  • Prohibition, as a concept, has failed repeatedly: It only exacerbates the threat created by unregulated markets, and is antithetical to the idea of free enterprise. The HIA is calling on state lawmakers to eschew bans in favor of partnering with hemp industry experts to safely open markets, foster innovation, and create jobs.
The HIA calls on industry leaders to solve this issue by adopting the highest quality testing standards for cannabinoids, marketing those products responsibly and transparently, including potency data, and including warnings against consumption by minors.

Related: 2021 Phytocannabinoids Market Update: Troubleshooting & Trendspotting U.S. Hemp Roundtable States Opposition to “Legal” Hemp-Derived THC U.S. Hemp Authority Won’t Certify “Hemp” Products Marketed for Intoxication

“Businesses, farmers, and consumers all deserve regulations that support the exploration of the hemp plant’s full potential. This isn’t just about one minor cannabinoid —the list is over a hundred already and growing,” said Jody McGinness, HIA’s Executive Director, in the press release. “Fortunately, the industry has all the expertise legislators could need, and those manufacturing leaders and scientists are engaged and ready to help create productive policy solutions.” The HIA’s Cannabinoids Council, a newly-formed member body focused on national priorities distinct to the cannabinoids sector of the hemp industry, has identified safe market expansion as a core focus for its early efforts.

The HIA is currently engaged in two lawsuits in response to the DEA’s Interim Final Rule on the 2018 Farm Bill, which creates a threat to extractors and manufacturers of hemp cannabinoids, marking the fourth time HIA has gone to court for hemp since the association formed in 1994; the press release notes thatHIA has previously seen victories over the DEA.