Get excited, Texans. On June 10, 2019 Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a farm bill that allows Texas farmers to grow hemp as a crop, with hemp production starting in 2020. That's right, it's not necessarily full marijuana legalization but a new law for industrial hemp production is still pretty cool.
Hemp is a cannabis strain that is most commonly used in CBD products. No, it's not actually marijuana because it contains less than .03% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which is the psychoactive compound that allows marijuana to get you high. At first, there was a gray area on what exactly the difference was with CBD oil and marijuana, but without the active ingredient of THC, hemp and CBD just give you all of the other relaxing benefits.
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"The hemp industry is rapidly growing and we need to ensure our farmers are able to participate. We hope this agricultural commodity will help boost rural communities now that there is a new viable crop option for our farmers," Perry told the Dallas Observer.
Over 42 other American states have already legalized hemp farming so it is about time that Texas and Gov. Greg Abbott joined in. The hemp bill will put limits on the kind of hemp can be manufactured and most likely will make things interesting with law enforcement.
KERA reported that the house bill and legal hemp use is making it more difficult to prosecute marijuana possession cases. Before the hemp legalization, you could be prosecuted for any cannabis product so now law enforcement has to be able to prove that the product does contain high levels of THC. The new hemp program probably won't help their cause but it definitely will help Texans everyone find a legal way to use relaxing hemp products without worrying about effects from THC.
This article was originally published in June of 2019. It was updated on May 13, 2020.