The DEA has been receiving questions from the public, namely the Hemp Industries Association who sued over the Drug Enforcement Administration’s attempt to regulate hemp extracts & derivatives as a Schedule I Drug in the Final Rule – the recent Controlled Substance Code Number (drug code) for marijuana extract made effective January 13, 2017. The DEA has come out and clarified their stance in this memo. You have questions, and Cannabis Life Radio breaks down the answers.
What does and doesn’t fall under the drug code? Although the memo says all derivatives of the plant which come from the flowering tops, resin, and leaves of cannabis are considered to be within the Controlled Substances Act’s definition of marijuana, the DEA explains that “if a product, such as oil from cannabis seeds, consisted solely of parts of the cannabis plant excluded from the CSA definition of marijuana, such product WOULD NOT BE INCLUDED in the new drug code (7350) or in the drug code for marijuana (7360), even if it contained trace amounts of cannabinoids.”
What is excluded from the CSA definition of marijuana? The memo states the term marijuana “does not include the mature stalks of such plant, fiber produced from such stalks, oil or cake made from the seeds of such plant, any other compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such mature stalks (except the resin extracted therefrom), fiber, oil, or cake, or the sterilized seed of such plant which is incapable of germination.”
So CBD oil and other extracts are excluded from the CSA’s definition of marijuana, right? Unfortunately this is not true. In the memo, the DEA contradicts the statement with this footnote:
“Nor would such a product (products extracted from the cannabis plant that are excluded from the CSA’s definition of marijuana) be included under drug code 7370 (tetrahydrocannabinols). However, as the Ninth Circuit stated in Hemp II, “when Congress excluded from the definition of marijuana ‘mature stalks of such plant, fiber . . . , [and] oil or cake made from the seeds,’ it also made an exception to the exception, and included ‘resin extracted from’ the excepted parts of the plant in the definition of marijuana, despite the stalks and seed exception.” Id. at 1018. Thus, if an extract of cannabinoids were produced using extracted resin from any part of the cannabis plant (including the parts excluded from the CSA definition of marijuana), such an extract would be included in the CSA definition of marijuana.”
What does this mean? Regardless that an extract uses only parts of the cannabis plant excluded from the CSA’s definition of marijuana, it is still included in the CSA’s definition of marijuana.
Exemption from the DEA and their clarification
The head of the DEA, Chuck Rosenberg, stated that hemp farmers and hemp that is grown in accordance with the US Farm Bill is safe from the DEA. More specifically, American hemp grown in accordance with the US Farm Bill as well as products derived from it such as hemp CBD oil, hemp CBD isolate, hemp CBD crystals, hemp CBD edibles, hemp CBD water solubles, and any other hemp CBD products protected from DEA.
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