Hemp Stays in Stores: DEA Hands Over Victory 

  Hemp Stays in Stores: DEA Hands Over Victory 

Posted by FoM on February 08, 2002 at 11:17:30 PT
Breaking News 
Source: U.S. Newswire  

The Drug Enforcement Administration handed a victory to the multimillion-dollar-a-year hemp food industry last night when they told the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit they will extend the "grace period" for hemp food products that contain "any THC." The extension reassures retailers stocking and selling hemp food products that, for the next 40 days, the DEA will not commence enforcement action. 
Ultimately, the hemp food industry expects to prevail against the DEA's attempt to ban hemp foods because Congress exempted nutritious hemp seed and oil from regulation (see 21 U.S.C. Section 802 (16)), and the trace infinitesimal THC in hemp seed and oil is not psychoactive and does not interfere with workplace drug-testing see: http://www.testpledge.comLawyers representing the Hemp Industries Association (HIA) and several major hemp food companies went to court Wednesday when it was apparent the DEA intended to enforce its October 9 "interpretive rule" banning foods with "any THC." DEA told Whole Foods, the largest natural foods supermarket chain in the United States, to remove hemp food products from store shelves even though there is no detectable THC in the hemp seed and oil under the official Health Canada protocol. In a letter sent yesterday to the Court of Appeals, Daniel Dormont, Senior Attorney for the DEA, wrote, "It is my understanding that the Court of Appeals wishes to know whether the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) was planning to commence enforcement action while the petitioners' motion for a stay is pending, given that the grace period published in the interim rule ended yesterday (February 6). In the view of the Court's inquiry, DEA will extend the grace period... for an additional 40 days, through March 18, 2002. As we discussed, this should allow the Court to rule on the motion prior to the expiration of the grace period." "We're pleased that DEA backed off from enforcement while the Court takes a hard look at a rule we know is arbitrary and misguided," says Eric Steentstra, president of Vote Hemp. Hemp manufacturers are pleased that hemp foods will stay on store shelves and expect to ultimately prevail in court. Environmental activist Woody Harrelson, who invested over $200,000 in developing a non-dairy "hemp milk" through his company Tierra Madre, said, "The DEA is a rogue agency distorting the law to destroy the livelihoods of hardworking Americans who have built a natural and sustainable industry." (Non-dairy milk is one of the largest and fastest growing segments of the natural food marketplace). Hemp seed has a well-balanced protein content and the highest content of essential fatty acids (EFAs) of any oil in nature: EFAs are the good fats that, like vitamins, the body does not produce and which doctors traditionally have recommended eating fish and flax to obtain. Thus, hemp seed and oil are increasingly incorporated as ingredients in a myriad of natural foods to boost their nutritional profile. U.S. companies are currently manufacturing cereals, waffles, pretzels, chips, salad dressings, bread and granola bars, among other products, that contain hemp seed or oil. Hemp seeds are harvested from non-psychoactive industrial hemp plants grown in Canada and Europe under strict regulatory regimes and have no potential psychoactive "drug" effect and do not interfere with drug testing even when unrealistic amounts are eaten on a daily basis. Poppy seeds, commonly consumed on bagels, contain harmless trace opiates (that have historically interfered with workplace drug tests), and DEA has sensibly not attempted to override the Congressional exemption of poppy seeds from the statutory definition of "opium poppy" in the CSA even though natural opiates in themselves are controlled elsewhere in the CSA. On October 9, 2001, without any public notice or comment, the DEA issued an "interpretive rule" purporting to make hemp foods containing non-psychoactive miniscule trace amounts of THC, the active ingredient found in marijuana, immediately illegal under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) of 1970. In fact, the U.S. Congress exempted non-viable hemp seed and oil from control under the CSA, 21 U.S.C. Section 802 (16), regardless of the presence of any trace miniscule THC (just as poppy seeds are exempted from the CSA despite containing trace opiates). Internal Department of Justice (DOJ) documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act show that the DEA was instructed by the DOJ (of which DEA is part) in March of 2000 not to restrict the import of hemp seed and oil: "Hemp products intended for human consumption have THC at levels too low to trigger a psychoactive effect and are not purchased, sold or marketed with the intent of having a psychoactive effect." The original memo from John Roth, Chief of the Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section of the DOJ, to Donnie Marshall, Acting Administrator of the DEA, is available upon request (an identical letter was also sent to U.S. Customs by Mr. Roth). The 10-year-old global hemp market is a thriving commercial success. Unfortunately, because DEA's drug-war paranoia has confounded the biologically distinct non-psychoactive industrial hemp varieties of cannabis with the psychoactive marijuana varieties, the U.S. is the only major industrialized nation to prohibit the growing and processing of industrial hemp. Please visit: -- to read scientific studies and see court documents. For more information or to arrange interviews with representatives of the hemp industry, please call Adam Eidinger at 202-986-6186 or 202-744-2671 (cell). Complete Title: Hemp Foods Stays in Stores: DEA Hands Victory To Industry Source: U.S. Newswire Published: February 8, 2002Copyright 2002 U.S. NewswireWebsite: Related Articles & Web Site:FTE's Hemp Links Fight: DEA Cracks Down on Hemp Foods Check Aisle 7 for War on Drugs

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Comment #16 posted by Dan B on February 09, 2002 at 08:13:18 PT:

Rescheduling is fine, but . . .
. . . the purpose of the schedules should be to provide guidelines for consumption and not to justify fascist laws against substances. So, I would be all in favor of placing alcohol and tobacco on Schedule 1 and moving cannabis to Schedule 5, but only under the condition that NO schedule be used as an excuse to prohibit substances, but only to regulate certain aspects of sales (no alcohol to minors, for example) and to inform the public about relative harms and benefits associated with those substances.By the way, I am also in favor of creating a uniform definition of "minor." This business of letting 18-year-olds buy cigarettes but making them wait three more years before they can buy a beer is nonsense. If you are old enough to vote and join the military, you should be old enough to make personal decisions about the substances you want to consume. And anyway, the cigarettes are more likely to kill you than the alcohol.Also by the way, I'm glad for this suspension and review of the ban on edible hemp products. The Bush administration is stepping up the war on cannabis on every front--medical, hemp, equating it with terrorism, etc.--and on every front its policies are backfiring. Many here on Cannabis News (E Johnson, Troutmask, GCW, mayan, others) have already said this; I'm merely seconding their observations.Dan B
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Comment #15 posted by Lehder on February 09, 2002 at 05:52:51 PT

drug warriors - dry out!
Let's start a movement to get alcohol amd tobacco on Schedule I.Why not?
Where do I sign up?The propaganda has already been written for us. And applied to booze and cigarettes - it's all true. Why wouoldn't it work? Because we lack an appealing religion of hatred.
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Comment #14 posted by Jose Melendez on February 09, 2002 at 05:39:10 PT:

Alcohol and Tobacco Schedule I, I like that!
Yes, if drugs were scheduled properly, alcohol and tobacco would be 1, and marijuana schedule 5. (keep Freedom Alive!)
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Comment #13 posted by E_Johnson on February 08, 2002 at 20:56:16 PT

Why not get proactive
Let's start a movement to get alcohol amd tobacco on Schedule I.Why not?Make the law consistent, one way or another.
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on February 08, 2002 at 19:09:35 PT

Seattle Weekly Hemp Article
Hi Everyone,I didn't post this because of the ruling today but here is the link.Hold The Waffles

The government bans all hemp foods, though you'd have to be crazy if they got you high.
Published February 7 - 13, 2002

GET YOUR Hemprella while you can. And your hemp chips, hemp coffee, and hemp waffles, too. After Feb. 6, many of those products will join heroin, cocaine, and ecstasy on the growing list of Schedule I controlled substances--the group of drugs considered by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to have "a high potential for abuse" and a "lack of accepted safety." 
The DEA's decision to effectively ban all products containing detectable amounts of THC, the chemical in pot that gets you high, was announced last October by agency administrator Asa Hutchinson, who declared with apparent horror that "many Americans do not know that . . . hemp cannot be produced without producing marijuana." The rule gave retailers four months to get THC-containing hemp products off their shelves. According to DEA spokesperson Rogene Waite in Washington, D.C., "the burden is on retailers" to identify and dispose of THC-containing products come the deadline. Seattle DEA spokesperson Tom O'Brian says, however, that the DEA won't be staging drug raids in the granola aisle. "Is it our responsibility? Yes. Is it our priority? No," he says. 
 Complete Article:
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Comment #11 posted by The GCW on February 08, 2002 at 18:27:24 PT

About 10 years ago America was flirting with corn. Lots of talk till it was evident corn is not cost effective, along with other shortcomings.The Gov. will subsidise it...Hemp is cost effective. Ecologically effective. Nutritional...
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Comment #10 posted by The GCW on February 08, 2002 at 18:22:56 PT

I was put in jail for fishing without a lic. Fact is, I wasn't fishing... my girlfriend was and was asked for the lic. and she started trembling, so I took her rod and reeled it in and set it down. The kind sir then asked me for mine and I said, oh, I wasn't fishing, and he said, yes you were I just say you.Arkansas jailed me over a $20 infraction. I am not impressed. 
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Comment #9 posted by Mari on February 08, 2002 at 18:13:51 PT

Alternatives to Oil
 I saw a piece last night on the national news (CBS). They were showing how using CORN could reduce our oil dependence. They showed plastics and cloth as examples. Now I know that you can do all that and thousands more with HEMP! And HEMP requires less furtilizer and pesticides! And you can grow more HEMPin more places for a higher yearly yeild. But apparently, the govt. has a massive surpluse of CORN and would rather spend the $$ on special CORN processing plants than work with HEMP.
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Comment #8 posted by E_Johnson on February 08, 2002 at 18:00:25 PT

Arkansas -- the real axis of evil?
Just thinkin' out loud...
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Comment #7 posted by mayan on February 08, 2002 at 16:54:41 PT

Yup E_J!
Arent "conservatives" supposed to stand for limited government & limited intrusions into the lives of the people? True conservatives should be all for industrial hemp! They should recognize that a vast majority of American farmers(who are generally conservative) want to be able to cultivate hemp. This big lie(hemp ban)is being exposed thanks to the heavy-handed tactics of the current fascist regime.
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Comment #6 posted by E_Johnson on February 08, 2002 at 13:21:44 PT

Why is health food seen as liberal?
One political flaw in Aa Hutxchinsoin's politically motivated attack on the hemp industry is his own misunderstanding of the evolving difference between modern and postmodern liberal and conservative philosophy.Health food is seen as being a liberal or left wing cause because of cultural baggage from the sixties. But that's strange because the hippies weren't really a modern leftist phenonenon, they were an anti-modern rebellion. That was really a traditional conservative movement, not a modern liberal one, even though the hippie movement played a role in defining what we now think of as modern liberal attitudes.But accepting the limitations that God has placed on humankind through the laws of Nature, and learning to work within those limitations and respect them -- that to me seems to be in keeping with a conservative philosophy.We can't eat all the beef and bacon and ice cream that we want, we have limitations, we need good food and we need good earth to grow good food in.I don't think Christians started taking seriously this domininion-over-the-earth business until the Industrial Revolution modernized them and corrupted them with the enormous (short term) financial profits that could be gained from pretending that natural limits on human disruption of Nature do not exist.That's the big modern lie -- that we have no limitations on us, because we are Human and our thoughts and designs can exceed and escape all physical law.So why is it not seen as conservative to reject that lie and embrace hemp?
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Comment #5 posted by The GCW on February 08, 2002 at 12:58:07 PT

Maybe the US farmer is the best 'cause he does it with out hemp, which would be less toil. So imagine how much better the best can and will get, once Re-legalized.Again, this is a God awesome oppertunity to write and get this out, among other things to provide a platform to speak our oppinion. Be sure to let your local health food store know this info... when I helped on Dec. 4th, I was surprised mine was as unaware as they were.

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Comment #4 posted by TroutMask on February 08, 2002 at 12:35:58 PT

This is great.You ever try to knock down a dead tree in the woods? You grab it, then pull, push, pull...the swings get larger and larger until *crack*, the whole thing falls down. That's what marijuana prohibition reminds me of. The swings are getting bigger and bigger...-TM
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Comment #3 posted by E_Johnson on February 08, 2002 at 12:17:14 PT

They outed themselves and can never go back now
The DEA really damaged themselves over this stupid extremist campaign.It's the beginning of the end for them. What real victory did they think they could achieve by this?What they have done in this senseless campaign is break their own biggest secret to the public -- they see themselves as existing in a base of power that is independent from all normal logic and reason and factuality that operates in our society.The DEA managed to keep that secret very well during the Clinton regime, but now with this hemp oil ban they have given up their most important secret, and that was a big mistake for them.They came out of the closet as power-abusing fools, and they can never go back in now.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on February 08, 2002 at 11:44:46 PT

Patrick That's Right
I'm very happy for the partial victory today but we need to grow Hemp. We really do. Last night we watched The History Channel and it was a program on Plastic. My mind was spinning as I watched how we got here from there. What started out as a good invention has polluted our earth with a product that is practically indestructible. I watch programs on Archeology that are on The Discover Channel or TLC. The earth needs help. In times before this generation everything returned to the earth. Then new plants and flowers were born and the cycle continued. Now we have a polluted earth and no way of cleansing itself and carrying on the natural cycle of life.
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Comment #1 posted by Patrick on February 08, 2002 at 11:31:25 PT

The President's Farm Bill
Today the Prez said that the American Farmer is the best in the world. He'll get no argument from me. So why is the American Farmer restricted from growing hemp? It is one of the most useful and beneficial plants on the planet. Oh I know. It competes against the fat daddy corporate oil and pharmaceutical companies for American dollars.The Farm Bill should reinstate hemp as a crop.

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