From Colorado to Canada, Poland to South America, global visitors arrived at the “Ranch Events Complex” to find 150 exhibitors offering a wide range of hemp industry elements—clones, certified seed, building materials, textiles, and expanding product lines from 35 CBD marketers.
More than 5,200 international hemp farmers, CBD sellers, regulators, and visionaries gathered for the 5th NOCO Hemp Expo, April 6-7 in Loveland, Colorado seemed to be beaming this year. Why? Senator Mitch McConnell has come through on his promise to pen a bill to legalize industrial hemp by removing hemp from the DEA’s list of Schedule I drugs.
The bill is co-sponsored by Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden and Kentucky's Rand Paul. It de-schedules all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, and seeds of hemp as long as those portions of the plant remain below the 0.03% THC threshold. The move would bring crop insurance to hemp farmers and allow USDA grants for new CBD and hemp research. Here is the full bill language.
“Fully legal hemp may be just months away,” noted one long-time veteran, as the realization for getting beyond Schedule I began to sink in. Lobbyists, major hemp leaders, and industry attorneys all agreed that the priority for McConnell’s bill—along with items for increased hemp research and expanded cross-state shipments—would be moving to create a standalone bill.
If the stand-alone bill fails to garner 60 votes in the Senate, bill handlers are reportedly hoping to include the McConnell provisions in the “must-pass” 2018 Farm Bill.
Prospects for passage appear to be 80/20, given the high-profile backing of McConnell, and the need to pass the Farm Bill.
Other NOCO Hemp Expo News
Nature’s Root introduced its new “CBD Chlorella” – a type of chlorophyll-rich seaweed which detoxifies the body of heavy metals, mitigates effects of radiation and chemotherapy, supports weight loss, and boosts the immune system.
“We are the first to be growing CBD in the state,” noted Janel Ralph, founder of South Carolina-based Palmetto Harmony. Ralph helped create the CBD/MMJ rules for her state but notes that most new grows there will be active in hemp for fiber applications.
Elsewhere on the sprawling show floor, TreeHouse showcased its full-spectrum CBD powder (50 percent CBD, one percent CBG and one percent CBC) solving the prior single isolate-only problem.
From southern California, Sana Hemp offers its full-spectrum CBD capsules formed after freeze-drying of non-extracted plant material. Military veteran/founder Tom Schultz debuted "Veterans Botanicals" and offered some of the lowest retail pricing found at NOCO for CBD oils.
NOCO Hemp Expo organizers claimed to have compiled a 100-company waiting list for booths and plans to move the show to a larger Denver venue in 2019.
NOCO promoter Morris Beegle is planning a new hemp show—"SouthernHempExpo—to be hosted in Nashville, Oct. 6-7, 2018.