Jul 15, 2021
NIHC Responds to Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act

The National Industrial Hemp Council (NIHC) Board Chair Patrick Atagi released the following statement after the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act was released in draft form by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Senator Corey Booker (D-NJ) and Seantor Ron Wyden (D-OR):

“On first glance, the draft contains many positive elements, and we’re pleased the approach of the sponsors is to solicit technical input before releasing final legislation. The accumulated experience of the hemp industry and its regulators over several years of navigating the tribulations of hemp policy will surely offer important insights as this legislation and subsequent regulations are developed, refined and implemented.

“Right now, hemp farmers around the country struggle with a patchwork of state and Federal laws because technical details and regulatory uncertainty have created confusion for the hemp industry at all levels of government. We hope this draft legislation will begin an opportunity for our industries to build and improve upon the experience of Federal regulation in hemp to promote consumer safety and transparency, to level the playing field for farmers and growers, and to create workable regulatory delineations and pathways so that businesses of all shapes and sizes can flourish while redeeming the promise of this new yet ancient crop. Indeed, the plants from which we make our products are cousins—hemp and marijuana are plants of the same species Cannabis sativa L.—and so too are our respective industries-distinct, but similar.

“The NIHC will continue reviewing the draft of this legislation, working with our membership in the hemp industry to provide feedback to lawmakers on Capitol Hill, and bringing our many lessons learned from the tribulations of hemp regulation. The NIHC believes we can work collaboratively with our counterparts in the high-THC cannabis industry toward realizing a sound regulatory vision for the future of legal cannabis in all its forms.”

Related: Draft Legislation to End the Federal Cannabis Prohibition Introduced››

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