Senator Testin, A-G Schimel discuss Wisconsin hemp enforcement issues

A Wisconsin State Senator is confident Badger State farmers and processors will be able to go forward with their first industrial hemp crop since 1937.

Patrick Testin tells Brownfield he met with Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel, state ag officials, and Rob Richard from Farm Bureau Wednesday to go over last week’s Justice Department’s enforcement memo saying anyone possessing the hemp extract called CBD oil could be prosecuted for making or possessing a controlled substance.

Last week, a federal appeals court sided with the Drug Enforcement Administration, ruling that the hemp extract CBD oil is a controlled substance.  Testin says they made their case as to why the production of CBD oil would be allowed under both the state’s industrial hemp law and the 2014 Farm Bill.  They also pointed out CBD oil can be made from both marijuana and industrial hemp, but hemp does not have significant amounts of THC, the substance in marijuana that makes people high.  He says there was also some confusion over the differences in the hemp program and Lydia’s Law, the Wisconsin law that legalized CBD oil for medicinal use.

The Senator says he left the meeting confident that anyone who participates in the Wisconsin industrial hemp pilot program and produces CBD oil will be able to produce, market, and consume the extract.  Testin says, “We have assurances from the Attorney General himself that this is going to be an issue that is addressed within the next day or so.”

More than 200 Wisconsin farmers applied for licenses and paid fees, only to have the Department of Justice memo cast doubt on if they should plant their industrial hemp seed.

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