Can States Ban Smokable Hemp?
Can states ban smokable hemp? Smokable hemp is embroiled in battles on both a national level and within several states. While generally speaking, it is permissible per the 2018 Farm Bill, issues regarding legality continue to arise. Foremost is the U.S. ban on shipping vape components, that has affected smokable hemp in all states. The 2020 USPS vape ban included products without nicotine and may abolish direct-to-consumer vape shipping. Enforcement is still pending, as USPS has said they need more time to review public comments. “Despite our best efforts, in order to ensure thorough and thoughtful consideration of the complex issues and voluminous comments by industry, individual and governmental stakeholders, the Postal Service is unable to publish a final rule”, per spokesman David P. Coleman. There is currently no projected timeline for publishing the rule to enact the USPS flavored vape mail ban.
Smokable Hemp Ban
Beyond this, states can, and some have enacted a specific smokable hemp ban. In August 2020, Louisiana signed a bill into law HB 843, that imposed new regulations on the state’s industrial hemp and CBD industries, and explicitly banned all smokable hemp products, except rolling papers. The reason cited for the ban was the inability of law enforcement officers to differentiate between hemp flowers and marijuana flowers at the time of arrest. The full legislation also outlines the requirements for those who continue to do CBD-related business in the state, including updates to fees, regulations for the labeling and testing products.
In August 2021, regulators in Hawaii set a ban in place on all smokable hemp products and cannabinoid-containing gummies and drinks. With the new rules, CBD products can only be in tincture, soft-gel, capsule, powder, tablet or topical form. The ban also targets vape liquids made with hemp-derived cannabinoids. “These rules are the next step toward regulating the growing hemp industry in Hawaii in a way that provides local hemp farmers a legal pathway to bring consumable hemp products to market while protecting consumers by requiring lab testing for contaminants and labeled cannabinoid content,” stated a spokesperson for the Hawaii Department of Health Food and Drug Branch in an August 9th announcement.
Texas Smokable Hemp
In more progressive news, Texas has had a difficult time maintaining a ban on smokable hemp. Four Texas companies challenged the ban in a lawsuit last year, and after much back and forth, on August 23, 2021, Judge Lora Livingston of the 261st Civil District Court ruled the Texas smokable hemp ban unconstitutional. The trial court’s ruling vindicates the economic liberty of Texas hemp farmers and operators seeking to prosper from this segment of the market, as well as Texas hemp consumers who can now purchase smokable hemp products that have been made in Texas. The battle to allow smokable hemp in Texas began in 2019 when HB 1325 prohibited the processing and manufacturing of hemp products for smoking. In August 2020, the Texas Department of State Health and Human Services (DSHS) issued rules prohibiting the processing and manufacture of smokable hemp products, as well as the distribution and retail sale of consumable hemp products for smoking. After a challenge was filed against DSHS, the associated legal team obtained a temporary injunction against the State of Texas to prevent the enforcement of the smokable hemp ban. Finally, in late August 2021, Judge Livingston ruled “25 Texas Administrative Code Section 300.104 is invalid in its entirety” and granted a permanent injunction that categorically prohibits DSHS from enforcing the smokable hemp ban.
USPS Mail and Flavored Vape Ban
March 2021 saw state legislators in Indiana reversing a ban on smokable hemp after a two-year lawsuit; references to “smokable hemp” will be removed from the state’s 2019 law establishing hemp regulations. In the Golden State, a bill has been sent to the governor’s desk to remove the ban on smokable hemp products, among other advancements. California’s ban on smokable hemp products would be lifted for out-of-state sale effective upon enactment, but a tax still needs to be established for such smokable products in-state before they could be marketed in California. Further, the law maintains a flavored vape ban as well as restricting sales to those aged 21 and older. The state Department of Cannabis Control would be required to “prepare a report to the governor outlining the steps necessary to allow for the incorporation of hemp cannabinoids into the cannabis supply chain” by July 1, 2022.
Go Green Botanicals is always current with the laws and is the best health and wellness advocate for the community. By providing the natural remedy of the highest quality CBD products at the best price, this resource is available in person as a brick and mortar establishment in New Braunfels, Texas, as well as a go-to for regional and national customers online.