Published October 1, 2018, Senate Bill No. 1409 became California law, effecting several changes to the industrial hemp program in California. The following is a list of some of the major changes that will go into effect on January 1, 2019:

  • Delete the requirement that industrial hemp seed cultivars be certified before January 1, 2013
  • Authorize industrial hemp clone propagation
  • Delete prohibitions on ornamental cultivation of industrial hemp plants
  • Authorize localities to regain the amount of registration
  • Remove industrial hemp as defined under the California Controlled Substances Act
  • Delete the requirement that industrial hemp be grown as a densely planted fiber or oilseed crop
  • Delete the requirement that an application for registration include information as to whether a seed is being grown for grain, fiber, or for dual purpose
  • Reduces the validity of registration for industrial hemp cultivators to one year instead of two
  • Require sample testing of industrial hemp and require that the Department of Food and Agriculture to establish sampling procedures

Senate Bill No. 1409 is hosted here.

For background, on July 6, 2018, California’s Department of Public Health issued a “FAQ” addressing the use of industrial hemp-derived CBD oil and CBD in food products. Although California allows the manufacturing and sale of cannabis products, “the use of industrial hemp as the source of CBD to be added to food products is prohibited…” and “[u]ntil the FDA rules that industrial hemp-derived CBD oil and CBD products can be used as a food or California makes the determination that they are safe to use for human and animal consumption, CBD products are not an approved food, food ingredient, food additive, or dietary supplement.” The FAQ is hosted here.

Only three days later, the California governor approved Assembly Bill No. 710 in anticipation of federally approved CBD. In sum, the bill’s language indicates that if CBD were to be excluded from Schedule I under the federal Controlled Substances Act and placed on another schedule, that product shall be deemed in compliance with California law “as an urgency statute.” Therefore, as soon as Epidiolex was rescheduled in late September, 2018, it was immediately compliant with California state law as a Schedule V substance. Assembly Bill No. 710 is hosted here.