By Jeff Greene

Let me start by acknowledging that I am not an attorney. This protects me from any meaningful negative feedback from the Bar or other attorneys, judges, and police officers. All that being said, my thoughts and suggestions are my own and if you plan on smoking hemp, growing hemp, manufacturing hemp products, or transporting hemp products, I highly recommend you have The Florida Hemp Council and your attorney on speed dial.

As the industry begins to accelerate, the farmers are starting to realize that demand is not unlimited, and the consumers are starting to realize that hemp can be in almost anything and everything. That means hemp is moving. As a biomass, as a seed, as a start, as a clone, as a distillate, as an isolate and as fiber, hemp can come in various forms. The “safest” are the forms that don’t smell and/or look like a potentially illegal substance. As a subscriber to almost every cannabis legal blog, I hear the horror stories of thousands of pounds of hemp being confiscated under the suspicion that the THC level exceeds maximum requirements.

The three most stressful car rides I have had were: 1) carrying 100 pounds of biomass to an extractor; (2) carrying four kilograms of CBD isolate from UPS to the lab; and (3) carrying 25 pounds of hemp flower from a warehouse to the UPS store. During any of those trips, had an overzealous law enforcement officer pulled me over and searched my car, notwithstanding my rights, I could have been in trouble. The odds of me, as a fifty-something white male getting arrested was probably not that great. But make me 30 years younger and the odds go up, adjust my skin pigmentation a few levels…and the odds go way up. The sad truth remains that either through ignorance, or sheer malice, law enforcement continues to seize completely legal hemp crops (often without probable cause).

Education of law enforcement is paramount in keeping the momentum and getting through this rough patch. State and local laws will continue to be updated but we need consistent messaging coming from the Federal law enforcement bodies. The FDA will be front and center to get there. We are doing our part working with State and local law enforcement and if you plan on being in the hemp space, don’t do it alone.

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