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A Comprehensive Guide On Marijuana Legalization In The US

As a recreational substance, hemp crops were grown in the US during the colonial period and the early days of the republic. Nevertheless, the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 ended the hemp industry in the US. 

By 1970, marijuana was classified under the Controlled Substance Act as a Schedule I drug. According to federal law, it was considered to have high abuse potential with no accepted medical use. Subsequently, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 removed the requirement of many cannabis products, including hemp. The Control Substance Act, making it legal to produce and market anything with 0.3% or delta-9 THC, but that was federally illegal. Despite this act, the state and the local government passed their laws to allow marijuana with some restrictions.

According to New Frontier Data, marijuana seeds were illegal under federal law. However, the marijuana industry according to estimates was worth $13.6 billion in 2019 with 340,000 cannabis jobs dedicated to handling the plants. Certainly, individual states have enacted their law that often contradicts the regulations of federal law. A total of 33 states have legalized marijuana for medical use, out of which 14 states allow adults to legally use the drug for recreational marijuana from March 2020. The number of users is growing as more people are in support of increasing marijuana and accepting to legalize across the United States.

Policy Reform

The total of 296 members i.e. 68% from the congress represents 33 states that show more votes were likely to be in favor of legalizing the bills. As per the research firm Viridian Capital Advisors, the marijuana companies raised $116.8 billion capital in 2019 from the cannabis industry. This trend can continue if banking reform can support this move in the US as banks are afraid of money laundering charges in such businesses. In addition, there is a capital risk for generating money. The American Bankers Association is trying to fill the gap between federal and state law but that can possible when the SAFE (Secure and Fair Enforcement) Banking Act passes. 

The FDA Instance for Marijuana Industry

According to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules, the drug-containing CBD needs the approval of the agency. Luckily, it was approved in 2018 for the first time. GW Pharmaceuticals Epidiolex was placed in restrictive Schedule V of the Controlled Substance Act by the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) which reflects it has a low potential for abuse.

Certainly, it was against the federal law to use the CBD in food products and dietary supplements, but the FDA indicates to change shortly. FDA has the authority to use the CBD. Here was one positive point as Farm Bill Legalising regulation of hemp was passed. It was good news for many companies, but an investor cannot expect that CBD can be placed in Schedule V or unscheduled together this early. It was almost impossible as the US has signed international treaties. Meanwhile, Epidiolex qualifies for Schedule V, and other FDA approved only by marijuana driven drugs with a low level of THC. The future of the marijuana industry is still uncertain. Experts are wondering whether the large corporation dominates it or fill the market with a cheap and generic product?  

Use of Medical Cannabis In US As Compared To Other Countries

In recent times, the deregulation of cannabis for medical purposes has led many businesses to invest in the medical cannabis market in the UK and Europe. Germany has already legalized cannabis for medical use in 2017. Other EU member states have also been influenced to do the same. Many countries such as Portugal, Denmark, Poland, and the UK changed their regulation concerning medical cannabis. The medicine based on cannabis was used to treat epilepsy and multiple sclerosis approved in November 2019 by NHS (National Health Service) in England.  

Canada, Uruguay, and 11 states of the US have legalized the production, manufacture, import, and export, trade, and distribution, possession of cannabis exclusively for medical and scientific purposes. Luxembourg has already legalized medical cannabis and look forward to making their law to become the first European country to legalize the production and consumption of marijuana. 

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