In late August, regulators in Hawaii set a ben in place on all smokable hemp products and cannabinoid containing gummies and drinks. With the new rules, CBD products can only be in tincture, soft-gel, capsule, powder, tablet or topical form. The ban also targets vape liquids made with hemp-derived cannabinoids. Some critics are raising red flags that this could be a hit to Hawaii’s hemp production.
The state ended a pilot hemp program and turned to a U.S. Department of Agriculture program last year, meaning all licensees and program applicants will need to seek approval from the USDA. There are an estimated 57 growers in the state.
“These rules are the next step toward regulating the growing hemp industry in Hawaii in a way that provides local hemp farmers a legal pathway to bring consumable hemp products to market while protecting consumers by requiring lab testing for contaminants and labeled cannabinoid content,” stated a spokesperson for the Hawaii Department of Health Food and Drug Branch in an August 9 announcement.
New Growing and Distribution Parameters
All hemp growers in Hawaii must comply with new growing and distributing parameters, a move that some think could negatively impact the industry on the islands. Hemp producers will need to obtain the correct USDA license and receive a certificate of registration to grow. Growers must then comply with all facility standards, quality control and record keeping, a smart move for consumers to benefit from. All hemp products will undergo required testing in order to be sold. Only naturally occurring cannabinoids are allowed for distribution and all ingredients must be clearly labeled. See Hawaii’s full breakdown of compliance here.
Hawaii is one of six states that has adopted to move its hemp cultivation oversight to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The processing rules for growers implemented this year come from the Department of Health. Some critics see the moves to regulate hemp cultivation and distribution will have a negative impact on the industry in the state. Now that all smokable hemp products, as well as gummies and drinks are banned, the options for consumers is severely reduced.
**This article was last updated on 9/17/2021**