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The Federal Farm Bill could make hemp farming legal – but in the meantime, Big Pharma and the FDA have quietly moved in on CBD

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Orlando Weekly Cover - hemp, orlandoweekly.com

While the state of Florida drags its feet through the process of implementing medical marijuana, some prospective patients are relying on CBD products as a fallback.

CBD is the non-psychoactive medicinal compound derived from cannabis. It’s generally processed from hemp, not marijuana.

And in what seems like great news for CBD, it’s likely the Federal Farm Bill making its way through Congress will legalize hemp farming.

But not so fast: Big Pharma may have made an end run around this nascent industry.

On June 25, the FDA approved GW Pharmaceuticals’ Epidiolex, a drug with CBD as its active ingredient, to treat epilepsy. But the FDA considers the sale of any food or cosmetic that contains the active ingredient of an FDA-approved drug to be illegal.

So the FDA approval of Epidiolex could give the federal government the strongest legal grounds yet to crack down on CBD oils and creams, while simultaneously laying the groundwork for Big Pharma to take over the medical marijuana industry.

Jonathan Miller of the Hemp Roundtable says if the FDA tries to block consumers from access to over-the-counter CBD products, his trade group will sue.

But Juanita Ramos of Folium Biosciences, a CBD producer, puts it in simpler terms: “My prayer is that our leaders will understand that not only is CBD good for the economy and job creation, it’s also good for humanity.

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