CANNABIS, MARIJUANA, HEMP, CBD, OH MY! A LEGAL EXPLANATION OF THE DIFFERENCE

Wednesday, December 18th, 2019

By Koral Fritz 

  • What is cannabis?

Cannabis is a genus of flowering plants in the Cannabaceae family. There are three primary species of cannabis: Cannabis staiva, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis.

  • What is marijuana?

Marijuana is any variety of cannabis that contains more than 0.3% THC.

  • What is hemp?

Hemp is a variety of cannabis that contains 0.3% or less THC content.

  • What is CBD?

CBD is a naturally occurring chemical compound found in cannabis.  Another compound found in cannabis plants is THC. As most people already know, THC is the chemical known to make consumers high. CBD, on the other hand, is the non-psychoactive portion of the cannabis plant.

CBD can be derived from either hemp or marijuana. The majority of CBD on the market is derived from hemp, which means it contains less than 0.3% THC and is regulated as “industrial hemp.” The 2018 Farm Bill legalized the use and sale of CBD derived from hemp.

CBD derived from marijuana remains a Schedule I controlled substance and its use and sale is illegal on the federal level.

  • How is hemp regulated in Michigan?

Growing: Through the Industrial Hemp Ag-Pilot Program, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (“MDARD”) can issue licenses to allow individuals to grow hemp in the state.

Processing/Handling: MDARD also has authority to issue licenses to processors and handlers of hemp. A processor or handlers is anyone who processes, handles, brokers, or markets industrial hemp. That means anyone who does any of the following will need a license:

  • Converts raw industrial hemp into a marketable form (Processor)
  • Possesses, stores, or transports industrial hemp on a premises owned, operated, or controlled by a registered grower of licensed processor-handler (Handler)
  • Engages or participates in the marketing of industrial hemp by acting as an intermediary or negotiator between prospective buyers and sellers (Broker)
  • Promotes or sells industrial hemp or an industrial hemp commodity or product (Marketer)

Consuming: All hemp products, such as hemp hearts, hemp fiber, etc., are also legal to consume or use in Michigan. Since Michigan has legalized the use of marijuana, adults can consume CBD derived from hemp and CBD derived from marijuana legally in the state subject to certain limitations.

The differences between marijuana and hemp continue to cause confusion. If you operate a marijuana or hemp business or are looking to get into the market, make sure to consult an attorney.

We have attorneys at Innovative Law Group that specialize in business and cannabis law. Contact us any time with any questions.

 

This post is made available to educational purposes only.  It provides general information and a general understanding of the law, but it does not provide specific legal advice. By using this site, commenting on posts, or sending inquiries through the site or contact email, you confirm that there is no attorney-client relationship between you and the Blog/Web Site publisher. The Blog/Web Site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction.

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