“Industrial hemp” and “cannabis” are two distinct varieties of the exact same plant species. “Hemp” is a fiber crop. “Marijuana” is a drug crop. These definitions have become puzzled in the last 60 years. Just recently, a motion has actually begun to identify the terms once again. It is important to comprehend the history of usage of these terms in order to remove the confusion.

1600-1930s Hemp’s Long History in North America

The word “hemp” has actually remained in the English language for over 800 years. The word “cannabis” is only 100 years old. From the very first settling of North America up until the 1930s, “hemp” was the most typical term for Cannabis sativa fiber crops. “Marijuana” was never ever used to describe hemp fiber crops, which were grown for canvas, rope, fuel oil, and paper. “Hemp” fiber crops were historically low THC and completely non-psychoactive.

1930s-1940s Marijuana tax Act confuses “Hemp” and “Marijuana”.

In the 1930s, the psychedelic (high-THC) range of marijuana sativa, imported from Mexico, became typical in the southern U.S. It was called “marijuana”, a word promoted through the “Reefer Madness” campaign, to distinguish it from the “hemp” fiber crops (which nobody ever smoked).

In 1937, the passage of the Marijuana Tax Act hopelessly confused the terms “hemp” and “cannabis”. For the first time, Congress defined these unique ranges of Cannabis sativa as being the very same. What had actually been frequently referred to as “hemp” was now “marijuana”.

1950s “Hemp” Crops Become Extinct.

In 1957, the last “hemp” fiber crop was collected in the U.S. Because low-THC Cannabis sativa fiber crops were now extinct, the word “hemp” dropped out of usage and was forgotten.

1960s “Marijuana” Legalization Movement Begins.

In the 1960s, the psychedelic range of marijuana sativa (” cannabis”) ended up being popular among the counter-culture. The movement to legalize “marijuana” in the 1960s and 1970s did not use the term “hemp” to explain “marijuana”.

1985 “Hemp”/ “Marijuana” Movement Begins.

In 1985, the word “hemp” re-surfaced in the book “The Emperor Wears No Clothes” by Jack Herer. This book exposed info that had been lost for nearly 40 years about “hemp’s” historical usages as a fiber crop. The book likewise promoted “hemp” as a solution to modern ecological problems.

Due to the fact that “The Emperor” was targeted at a “marijuana” motion and given that it was not commonly known that low-THC varieties of hemp existed in Europe and Asia, it was believed that “marijuana” should be legislated to enable commercial uses of “hemp”. And since it was the environmentalists and the counter-culture that started promoting hemp as an alternative fiber crop, they were not taken seriously.

1989 European Farmers Grow “Hemp”.

In Europe, some nations (like France and Spain) had actually never ever stopped producing “hemp”. In 1989, the European Economic Community developed rules to govern “hemp” production that applied to all its member countries. The EEC defined authorized seed ranges for low THC “hemp” and techniques for screening “hemp” for THC content.

1993-1994 England and Canada Grow “Hemp”.

In 1993, England formally acknowledged the distinction between “hemp” and “marijuana”, to make its farmers competitive in the EEC. In 1994, Canada, seeing competitors from Europe, allowed “hemp” production.

1994 Kentucky Appoints “Hemp” Task Force.

In November of 1994, the Governor of Kentucky, seeing competition from Canada and Europe, selected a Task Force to study the commercial possibilities of “hemp” in his state.

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1994-1995 “Hemp/Industrial Hemp” Movement Begins in U.S.

For the first time, farmers, makers, processors, and farming scientists in North America began to take a major look at “hemp” as an agricultural crop and alternative fiber. As well, the “hemp” environmentalists within the “marijuana” arena see that signed up seed ranges exist to identify “hemp” from “cannabis”.

This varied coalition starts utilizing the word “commercial hemp” (or merely “hemp”) to refer exclusively to low-THC non-psychoactive varieties of Cannabis sativa. The objective of the “industrial hemp” motion is to allow genuine production of “hemp” fiber crops and to check out the environmental advantages of “hemp” as an alternative fiber, pulp, and oil source.

Jan. 1995 Colorado Senator Introduces “Hemp” Legislation.

In January 1995, Senator Lloyd Casey (D-Northglenn), made Colorado the first state to attempt to define “hemp/industrial hemp” as distinct kind “marijuana” when he presented the Hemp Production Act. Unfortunately, this costs was eliminated in Committee due to objections from the Federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

Oct. 1995 North American Industrial Hemp Council Formed.

In October 1995, the steering committee of the North American Industrial Hemp Council made “commercial hemp” a completely unique concern, separate from the legalization of “cannabis”.

Jan. 1996 Colorado and Vermont Introduce “Hemp” Legislation.

Legislators in two states presented “commercial hemp” legislation, Sen. Lloyd Casey (D) from Colorado and Rep. Fred Maslack (R) from Vermont.

Jan. 1996 Support for “Hemp” Grows.

A strong union of varied companies now supports “Industrial hemp”, including:.

American Farm Bureau federation (4.6 million member).
Colorado Farm Bureau.
Colorado Department of Agriculture.
Colorado State Grange.
Kentucky Farm Bureau.
Kentucky Hemp Growers Cooperative.
Wisconsin Agribusiness Council.
Wisconsin Department of Agriculture.
International Paper Company.
Bolton Emerson Americas.
Colorado Environmental Coalition.
Oregon Natural Resources Council.
HIA (Hemp Industries Association).
North American Industrial Hemp Council.

Most, if not all of these groups have particularly mentioned that they are opposed to the legalization of marijuana. They recognize the difference between “hemp/industrial hemp” and “marijuana” which “hemp/industrial hemp” can be grown securely without impacting “marijuana” laws, production, or usage.

Today: Making Progress …

25 of 53 state hemp-related bills introduced given that 1995 have actually passed and in general, 14 states have actually successfully passed hemp-related legislation. In 2002, hemp costs have been introduced in 7 states: Arizona, California, Hawaii, New Mexico, Vermont, Wisconsin and West Virginia. The CA, HEY and WV expenses have actually passed, the NM and VT costs have actually died in committee, and the AZ and WI expenses have actually been held until 2003.

” Hemp/industrial hemp” and “marijuana” are two distinct varieties of the exact same plant types. “Marijuana” was never ever used to describe hemp fiber crops, which were grown for canvas, rope, fuel oil, and paper. In 1937, the passage of the Marijuana tax Act hopelessly confused the terms “hemp” and “marijuana”. What had actually been frequently known as “hemp” was now “cannabis”.

The EEC defined registered seed varieties for low THC “hemp” and methods for screening “hemp” for THC content.

The Farm Bill of 2018 finally ended the “general prohibition on hemp and CBD”.


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