Iowa to restrict hemp-derived cannabis products

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Iowa will restrict hemp-derived cannabis products and expand its medical marijuana program under a bill headed to the governor’s desk.

House File 2605 will double the number of MMJ dispensary licenses available once Gov. Kim Reynolds signs it into law, according to the Iowa Capital Dispatch.

The bill also:

  • Limits consumable hemp products to 4 milligrams of THC per serving.
  • Limits consumable hemp products to 10 milligrams per package.
  • Requires warning labels on hemp-derived products containing THC.
  • Limits sales to people 21 or older.
  • Creates penalties for possession, sale and manufacturing of hemp.

Iowa is among the state governments grappling with how to regulate hemp-derived THC products, which are federally legal under the 2018 Farm Bill.

Republican Sen. Dan Dawson, the floor manager of HF 2605, said he wants to ensure the state’s MMJ patients don’t turn to hemp-derived THC products as a substitute for marijuana or seek medical intervention without the oversight of a doctor.

“The Iowa hemp program has none of those barriers there,” Dawson told the Capital Dispatch.

“So if we want to protect Iowans with these products … there has to be some type of guardrails on here, to make sure that the medical cannabidiol program is the program that we can direct Iowans to when they have one of these diagnosed conditions.”

Democrats voted against HF 2605, arguing that some Iowans might need access to hemp-derived THC medicines.

Lawmakers are also debating Senate Study Bill 3186, which would add a 2.5% excise tax to consumable hemp products, the Capital Dispatch reported.