Medical marijuana has only recently been legalized in Pennsylvania, but Governor Tom Wolf
is not yet finished with revising the state’s cannabis laws. In
late July 2016, he signed a bill that will change Pennsylvania
hemp law, allowing more farmers to cultivate hemp for various uses. In particular,
the Agriculture Department has been tasked to oversee hemp cultivation
programs directed for state and scholarly research and studies.
Hemp is a plant form the same family as marijuana but it has virtually
no chance of impairing or influencing a user. THC, which is the chemical
component that induces a “high” in marijuana users, is 17
to 70 times weaker in hemp. Parties that feared that hemp could be used
in illegal drug production have found it difficult, if not impossible,
to maintain their arguments in light of this scientific evidence.
Proponents of the newly-signed hemp bill pointed out that hemp was a significant
crop in Pennsylvania before 1950, when federal laws banned cultivating
any cannabis plant species. With hemp starting to reenter Pennsylvania’s
crop cycle, industries that use the crop for miscellaneous uses –
making rope, clothing fiber, construction insulation, etc. – should
expect a rise in profits and productivity. Farmers can grow hemp between
seasons of their main crops due to the plant’s low maintenance requirements
and its ability to keep soil healthy.
This is only the first step of many in promoting the return of hemp cultivation
in Pennsylvania and America. Although the Agriculture Department estimates
that it will cost the state half-a-million dollars to conduct its annual
research, the pay-off will certainly be worth it if it means revitalizing
an entire industry.
For more information on this new bill, you can read a full article posted by the
here. As Pennsylvania’s leading law with membership to the American Trade
Association of Cannabis and Hemp (ATACH), Sacks Weston Diamond LLC is interested in all legal matters related
to cannabis, marijuana, and hemp laws. Be sure to
visit our blog for routine updates, or
contact us if you have a legal matter that requires the attention of our professional
Pennsylvania hemp lawyers.