December 13, 2018 — Both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives have passed the Agriculture and Nutritional Act or Farm Bill, an $867 billion initiative that has had strong bipartisan support, the Washington Post reported.
The bill passed with a vote of 87-13 in the Senate on December 11 and a vote of 386-47 in the House on December 12. It now will move to President Trump’s desk to be signed into law.
Industrial Hemp Would Be Legalized
Among the bill’s provisions is the legalization of industrial hemp, a cannabis strain which is critical to the U.S.’s burgeoning industry of products containing cannabidiol, or CBD, a non-psychotropic chemical in hemp that its proponents and increasing numbers of scientific studies say has multiple therapeutic benefits, including pain relief.
The CBD industry includes CBD-infused products for topical use, such as pain-relieving creams and salves, as well as oils, tinctures, and nutritional supplements meant to be taken internally.
Many such CBD products are already on the market, but have existed in a legal gray area due to Cannabis sativa, or marijuana, remaining federally illegal. (Marijuana has been legalized for recreational use in 10 U.S. states, and for medicinal use in 33 states, reports Business Insider.)
CBD typically comes from industrial hemp, Cannabis sativa indica, a non-psychotropic strain of the plant containing negligible amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, which produces the “high” associated with marijuana use.
CNBC reports that CBD could become a $20 billion industry by 2022.
CBD and Chiropractic
Chiropractic Economics has often reported on the use of CBD in the chiropractic industry. Many chiropractors are finding success with using CBD as an alternative to opioids for chronic pain. They are also recommending CBD for a variety of common patient conditions such as anxiety, migraines, chemo related side effects, MS, epilepsy, high blood pressure and more.
While the benefits of CBD are still being explored, the ever-changing legal status of CBD has made some DCs hesitate to recommend the product to their patients. The Farm Bill could change all that.
Other Provisions in the Farm Bill
The Farm Bill also expands some farming subsidies and provides permanent funding for some farmers markets and other food initiatives. An earlier provision that was dropped from the final bill would have imposed new rules and restrictions on SNAP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps).
President Trump is expected to sign the Farm bill very soon. Chiropractic Economics will update this article with new information as it becomes available.