Smokable hemp ban in North Carolina could be law by December

The North Carolina House Agriculture Committee approved a bill that supports a ban on smokable hemp.

The House committee on Friday moved the legislation forward, including a smokable hemp ban that would take effect Dec.1.

The ban, part of a bill outlining the state’s hemp program in accordance with the 2018 Farm Bill, passed the state Senate earlier this month.

The Senate’s measure would delay the ban until December 2020 and call for the hemp industry and law enforcement to develop an agreement before then.

North Carolina’s Bureau of Investigation is pushing for the ban, saying it is difficult for law enforcement to discern smokable hemp from marijuana.

State officials are looking for a field test to help distinguish hemp from marijuana and plan to test one next week, but currently there is no validated field test, Raleigh TV station WRAL reported.

Smokable hemp is currently legal in North Carolina.

Industry members testified at the House Agriculture Committee hearing that smokable flower is one of the more profitable products of the hemp industry, selling for up to $800 per pound.

The next step falls to the House Judiciary Committee, but the North Carolina House and Senate will have to agree on language for the bill to pass.

North Carolina’s hemp industry is booming, thanks to flexible state laws about production and climate suited to the plant. Farmers say hemp is an easy pivot from tobacco, North Carolina’s traditional cash crop.

North Carolina currently has:

  • 11,572 outdoor hemp acres.
  • 4.5 million square feet of indoor hemp cultivation.
  • 933 licensed hemp farmers.
9 comments on “Smokable hemp ban in North Carolina could be law by December
  1. Ray on

    “North Carolina’s Bureau of Investigation is pushing for the ban, saying it is difficult for law enforcement to discern smokable hemp from marijuana.”

    So tell me how is law enforcement going to tell the difference between a nicotine vape, hemp vape or marihuana vape?
    Answer: They Can’t

    This ban is a slippery slope and could/will eventually lead towards banning hemp edibles, vape products and body salves if it passes.

    Just another example of North Carolina Americans giving up their new found cannabis freedoms to an over zealous law enforcement agency and politicians who write the laws. If these people really cared about the public they would ban cigarettes and alcohol first.

    • James on

      How can you ban hemp when it’s helping health-wise and still want people to buy cigarettes and it’s killing us all breathing the smoke. Make this law pass so it can help people with illnesses. Help our military personnel and those with cancer.

    • Mark on

      Most people don’t use flower to smoke. You can vape it and make oils, tinctures, edibles, etc. It is more cost effective than buying a $75 bottle of CBD oil that is gone in no time. This is a huge step backward in my opinion, hemp is legal and people should be able to use as they please. People should be allowed to grow in their garden as well, it’s just a plant, maybe they should ban home cultivation of tomatoes and corn too. I agree, if they want to ban hemp flower because you can smoke it, they need to ban tobacco as well. If they are worried about people’s health they need to ban alcohol, sugar, processed foods, soda, energy drinks, etc because they do far more harm than the humble hemp plant. If the issue is not having a reliable test to determine if it is hemp then find one that works. I think the real issue is government control at the local level being pushed by big pharma as they only want you to take their poison, not a healthy natural remedy.

  2. Ray on

    “North Carolina’s Bureau of Investigation is pushing for the ban, saying it is difficult for law enforcement to discern smokable hemp from marijuana.”

    This is a slippery slope because the same argument can be made about hemp vapes, gummies, cbd mints, salves, oils and capsules. I really hope the people of North Carolina don’t give up their new hemp freedom to an overzealous law enforcement lobby group.

    The North Carolina Bureau of Investigation is forgetting that hemp is no longer an illegal vegetable. They need to be more concerned about tobacco and alcohol than some veteran or cancer patient smoking hemp to help their anxiety or manage pain.

    • Ray on

      Christine, unfortunately law enforcement is still doing their best to keep hemp illegal because they will lose work and jobs if they can’t keep arresting people for petty marijuana charges.

      If people have the right to smoke hemp that’s less American citizens they can arrest and process through the system. The police know this, lawyers know this and corrections knows this, that’s why there is so much pushback and reefer madness.

      The police unions and agencies are as concerned about losing jobs as you are and they are much better organized.So unless you can educate North Carolinians about hemp and their American right to smoke hemp this ban will pass, the cops will get what they want and hemp will go back to being illegal.

  3. CARL on


  4. Jason rios on

    This is B.S.! Thought North Carolina would finally see the light and hemp and cannabis production. This just furthers the point that pharmaceutical companies are lobbying hard against this, as well as law enforcement, because, Lord forbid they actually do actual law enforcement and bust pedophilia, sex trafficking , and abuse in general. We need to go to the polls come election time to elect officials that are for cannabis and hemp production for the economy well-being of this state.

  5. James on

    James smokable hemp isnt the problem its these dangerous drugs they come from all over it s mostly people in this town over dosing on fentanyl heroine and some drugs they dont know what they are stop trading for forein countrys not saying there all bad but opioids kill millions the government is liberal and we need some men to oppose foreign relations be freinds with them and they will govern over us we are failing the people of the united states

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