Ohio has officially legalized hemp and CBD products.
Governor Mike DeWine signed Senate Bill 57 into law, decriminalizing hemp and opening the door to a new industry in Ohio. The newly-created hemp program will be administered by the Ohio Department of Agriculture.
“Industrial hemp will give Ohio farmers another crop option to help them diversify their farms and possibly find another stream of revenue to offset years of declining commodity prices,” said Adam Sharp, executive vice president of the Ohio Farm Bureau. “We are pleased that the state legislature passed and Governor Mike DeWine signed SB 57 and we look forward to working with the Ohio Department of Agriculture as the program begins to take shape.”
Under the medical marijuana law that went into effect late last year, hemp and CBD were both considered the same as marijuana and banned from sale outside of state-approved dispensaries. Hemp is a cannabis plant, but it doesn’t produce intoxicating effects, and is grown for its many industrial uses. Hemp contains a fiber, a grain, and oil that can be extracted for CBD, which is now being used in food, medicine, and dietary supplements.
The state hopes farmers can be licensed and growing the crop by next spring. The new hemp program will set up a licensing structure for farmers who want to grow or process and will also allow universities to grow and cultivate the crop for research. The Ohio Department of Agriculture will also oversee testing of CBD and hemp products for safety and labeling the products for Ohio consumers.
If you’d like more information about the hemp program, you can visit the ODA website here.
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