Please Don't Eat the Hemp

  Please Don't Eat the Hemp

Posted by CN Staff on April 04, 2003 at 07:38:31 PT
By Jordan Smith 
Source: Austin Chronicle  

With a stay still in force from the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, the Drug Enforcement Administration on March 21 did an end-run around the court and the nation's hemp industries, announcing a "final" rule banning the sale of foods containing hemp seed or oil. "In some cases ... a controlled substance may have a legitimate industrial use," reads the DEA's press release. The Controlled Substances Act "allows for industrial use of Schedule I controlled substances, but only under highly controlled circumstances." As such, the DEA has determined that body-care products containing hemp oils, such as soaps or lotions, are legal under the CSA -- only so long as they are not intended "for human consumption," the rule reads. 
According to the DEA, hemp food products -- such as ice creams, tortilla chips, and cooking oils -- are forbidden because they contain trace amounts of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. The DEA first floated this interpretation back in 2001, claiming that industrial hemp products should be subject to the same federal restrictions as marijuana itself -- without acknowledging that trace THC in hemp products does not get users high. The rule drew the ire of industrial hemp advocates, who sought and won a stay from the San Francisco-based 9th Circuit. The DEA was undeterred, floating a "proposed" rule identical to the "interpretive" rule the court had stayed. The agency has received nearly 150,000 public comments, most against the rule, but still, on March 21, published in the Federal Register the final ruling, putting a ban on hemp food products effective April 21. "It's really convoluted," said David Bronner, chair of the HIA's Food and Oil Committee. Bronner said the HIA has filed an "urgent" motion with the 9th Circuit to stay the new and allegedly final rule. The hemp-products industry has grown to nearly $150 million a year, with hemp foods being its smallest but fastest-growing segment; hemp foods currently bring in around $6 million a year. The U.S. is the only large industrial nation that doesn't distinguish between marijuana as a drug and industrial forms of hemp, Bronner said; Canada, Japan, and China are among the countries with thriving hemp industries. "This is just a knee-jerk reaction to lump all cannabis together," he said. He added that the hemp food ruling may have a negative effect on nonfood hemp businesses -- like his soap company, Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps. Dr. Bronner's contains hemp oil as a basic component of its formula, and if hemp oils are defined as food and thus banned, his company will "have to reformulate with an inferior formula," he said. For more on the DEA's ruling go to: or http://www.votehemp.comSource: Austin Chronicle (TX)Author: Jordan SmithPublished: April 4, 2003 - Vol. 22 - No. 31Copyright: 2003 Austin Chronicle Corp.Contact: louis auschron.comWebsite: Articles & Web Site:Cannabis News Hemp Links DEA Final Rule on Hemp Foods Challenged Go To Washington NAFTA Suit Begins Arbitration Phase

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Comment #3 posted by afterburner on April 04, 2003 at 22:41:16 PT:
Oh Mr DEA Man Is This Based on FDA "Science"?
You deny the right to eat cannabis seed products, containing essential omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, because of trace amounts of THC insufficient to get anyone "high," and yet you allow the sale of poppyseeds with trace amounts of opium insufficient to get anyone "drugged." What kind of medical logic is that?Certified Organic Hemp Oil Seeds destruction or ego transcendence, that is the question.
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Comment #2 posted by Virgil on April 04, 2003 at 08:22:51 PT
Remember "This is your brain on drugs"?
I cannot help but think of the old and famous propaganda commercial with the frying pan. Only the real line would be This is your country on prohibition.
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Comment #1 posted by Max Flowers on April 04, 2003 at 07:54:53 PT
More usurped power tripping
This is BS, this is a states' rights issue (again!) first of all, but underlying that even is the issue that DEA as a federal agency is not authorized by the constitution or anyone else, legally that is, to make this kind of prohibition. What crap this is... I can poison myself with household products all day long that contain harmful chemicals, and the DEA nor anyone else cares, but because a healthful hemp snack might have a trace of THC and might alter my consciousness (which it of course cannot), they try to clamp down on it. How about banning sodium lauryl sulfate in shampoo, or hey, I know, the freekin' flouride in toothpaste if they're so worried about toxicity?? Do you know that flouride---radioactive, toxic and dangerous in any amount larger than what it takes to brush your teeth---is not even approved by FDA as a safe additive?? They have just let it be in there for decades based on voodoo science that was cooked up in the 1940s to justify a fledgling "flouride industry" which benefited the weapons industry by giving them a way to dispose of waste products from atomic weapons manufacturing (flouride) and make money at the same time: give it to these poor saps (The People) in their toothpaste and tell them it prevents cavities. Bastards.The posturing that the hemp ban is "for our own good" is just sickening, transparent lies.
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