Iowa hemp law now in force despite court challenges

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Iowa’s new hemp law went into effect Monday, only days after a lawsuit contesting the statute was denied and another challenge was filed.

A U.S. district judge for the Southern District of Iowa on Friday rejected a request by two THC drink makers to limit enforcement of the state’s new law restricting THC in consumable hemp products to 4 milligrams per serving and 10 milligrams per container, The Gazette of Cedar Rapids reported.

The statute, signed into law by Iowa’s governor in May, also mandates that such products include a warning label.

The two plaintiffs – Climbing Kites in Des Moines and Field Day Brewing in North Liberty – argued that federal law supersedes Iowa’s in terms of packaging and label requirements for food.

However, Judge Stephanie Rose wrote in her ruling that, although she found Iowa’s House File 2605 vague, “those concerns were not raised by the plaintiffs,” according to The Gazette, nor did they prove federal law usurps the state statute.

Eight more businesses file suit

Meanwhile, eight other Iowa hemp companies banded together to file a second suit against the state on Friday.

That latest lawsuit, also filed in the Southern District of Iowa, challenges the constitutionality of HF 2605 as well as a second regulatory statute, HF 2641, the Iowa Capital Dispatch of Cedar Rapids reported.

The plaintiffs in the second suit are:

  • American Shaman, a Missouri-based multistate operator with Iowa stores in Altoona, Indianola and West Des Moines.
  • Beyond CBD in Des Moines.
  • Campbell’s Nutrition Centers in Des Moines.
  • Greene Goods Market and Greenhouses in Jefferson.
  • HW Premium CBD in Urbandale.
  • Icanna CBD in Ames.
  • Sky High in Cedar Falls.
  • Your CBD Store, a Florida-headquartered MSO with a store in West Des Moines.

‘Regulatory limbo’

Those businesses allege in their suit that the state regulations they are mandated to follow “are not expected to be finalized until July 17 at the soonest,” according to the Capital Dispatch.

That’s well after the statute took effect, meaning the businesses are noncompliant with the law, leaving them in “regulatory limbo.”

The state has not responded to the second challenge, the Capital Dispatch reported.

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