Applications for Louisiana retailers looking to sell recently legalized Cannabidiol (CBD) products will soon be available, the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control (ATC) announced Friday.
Gov. John Bel Edwards signed House Bill 491 into law Thursday, which legalized the growth of industrial hemp and also authorized the sale of hemp-derived CBD products with a THC concentration of less than 0.3 percent, according to ATC.
"ATC, along with the Louisiana Department of Health, is working to promulgate formal rules which will provide detailed regulations," ATC said in a release. "Meanwhile, ATC will make applications available to retailers to begin the process of evaluating potential CBD vendors on June 17, 2019."
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Hemp comes from the same species of plant, Cannabis Sativa, as marijuana. Unlike marijuana, however, hemp does not have enough THC to get users high. Instead, it is used in a wide range of industrial products, textiles, fuels and other products. Producers also extract Cannabidiol, or CBD, from hemp, infusing the chemical with oils, tinctures, lotions, food products and others.
Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain would have broad regulatory powers over the hemp program, creating rules, handling permits and destroying crops that don’t meet THC thresholds. Strain has said the program will be tightly-regulated and in line with federal rules.
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Sales of CBD products have come under increasing scrutiny in recent months, culminating in the high-profile arrest of a CBD seller in Lafayette last month.
Reporting from Sam Karlin and Mark Ballard contributed to this article.