Hemp reform is sweeping across the globe. The hemp plant has always been a versatile, useful plant but prohibition policies kept it from being put to widespread use for several decades in many countries all over the world.
In recent years the walls of hemp prohibition have been crumbling across the planet as more and more nations reform their outdated laws to allow for the mass production of industrial and floral hemp.
Floral hemp has been particularly popular with consumers in the last few years, driven by the rise in demand for CBD products. Nations are finally coming to the sensible realization that farmers should be allowed to benefit from cultivating the hemp plant.
Ecuador is one of those countries. The South American nation is working towards implementing a legal hemp industry, and adopted a THC standard this week. Ecuador followed in the footsteps of a handful of other countries by setting a 1% THC limit. Per Hemp Today:
The Ecuadorian government has set the maximum THC level for industrial hemp at a full 1%, following the lead of Uruguay, Switzerland and Australia.
The limit was set in policy changes outlined during a legislative session this week that legalized industrial hemp by removing it from the Ecuadorian criminal code. The 1% THC limit is based on dry weight of hemp green matter. The reformed criminal code states clearly that hemp under that limit is no longer a prohibited crop, and that regulation of THC levels is the responsibility of the National Agrarian Authority.
A 1% THC limit may not sound like much, but it’s a very progressive standard compared to other countries’ standard, including the United States. The United States has a limit of just 0.3%.
Numerous studies have found that CBD is more effective when consumed with THC. If the studies are correct, it’s better for Ecuador’s future CBD industry to have a higher THC limit because presumably, CBD products would be more effective and thus more desirable to consumers and patients.
A higher THC limit is also better for farmers, which have to destroy their harvests if they are tested and found to exceed THC standards. The higher THC limit allows all hemp farmers, both industrial and floral, more flexibility when looking for genetics to cultivate.
The hemp plant should not be limited to only being processed into CBD products, but consumer demand is going to be a deciding factor in what hemp gets turned into.
Supply and demand is going to drive public policy, and if demand for CBD results in improved policies for industrial hemp that is turned into non-CBD products, so be it.