What is the difference between hemp, marijuana, and cannabis?
Oct 24, 2021
HEMP | MARIJUANA | CANNABIS
Are Hemp and Marijuana the Same? No, but they are both part of the Cannabis family. Hemp is completely different from marijuana in its function, cultivation and application. Marijuana is used for medicinal or recreational purposes. Hemp is used in a variety of other applications. These include supplements, skin products, clothing, construction materials, paper products, sustainable fuel and food sources, and accessories . Overall, hemp is known to have over 25,000 possible applications in every industry from lumber to pharma.
Can You Get “High” Off Hemp? “Your lungs would fail before your brain attains any high from smoking industrial hemp” is a common response to this question.
The main difference is the chemical compositions, specifically in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the chemical responsible for marijuana’s psychological effects. Marijuana contains anywhere from 5-20% THC content on average. "Premium" marijuana can have up to 25-30% THC. Hemp has a max THC level of 0.3%, essentially making it impossible to feel any psychoactive effect or get a “high”. Hemp also has high cannabidiol (CBD) content that is scientifically proven to act as THC’s antagonist.
How Hemp got grouped in with Marijuana and made illegal, until 20 December 2018 thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill. President Nixon declares war on cannabis. In the 1970s, President Nixon declared a “War on Drugs” and signed into law the United States Controlled Substances Act of 1970 (US CSA). This law established a set of banned drugs and created the Drug Enforcement Administration (DE A). It also unintentionally outlawed one of the world’s oldest domesticated crop, hemp. This not only led to the demise of hemp, but also an increased misconception of the plant.
In the Controlled Substances Act, hemp was grouped with marijuana and made illegal to grow in the US. This, unfortunately, classified hemp as a drug even though it doesn’t include high enough amounts of THC to have the "high" psychoactive effects, which is why Marijuana is classified as a drug. The 2018 Farm Bill was signed on 20 December 2018 and permanently removed hemp from the CSA. The FDA has full regulatory authority of CBD and is expected to regulate it as any natural vitamin, but some states have CBD specific laws despite the announcement of the historic Farm Bill news.