The article is worth reading as it highlights the various legislative issues / dichotomies currently embedded in Federal law when it comes to definitions and issues
Colorado is now home to some of the nation’s first certified organic cannabis, which comes with a blessing from federal regulators. CBDRx, a Longmont, Colorado cannabis farm, has secured a certification to market its products with the organic seal from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a major coup for the plant’s enthusiasts.
“As long as the industrial hemp is grown according to the Farm Bill, it can be certified organic to the USDA National Organic Program,” wrote Penelope Zuck, the agency’s organic program accreditation manager, in an email correspondence obtained by KUNC.
Catch that? We’re talking about hemp here, which is still considered cannabis under federal law. The distinction, and USDA’s decision to certify it, throw the plant into an even larger legal gray area.
“Marijuana may not be certified organic under the USDA organic regulations,” Zuck wrote in October 2015.
Part of the problem is semantics. “Hemp,” “cannabis,” “marijuana,” and the plant’s countless nicknames are used interchangeably and as shorthand to denote the chemical makeup of different varieties. As it stands now, the Farm Bill makes some varieties of cannabis, colloquially known as “hemp,” federally recognized and legitimate crops as long as they’re below a THC threshold.
But a lack of nuance in the Controlled Substances Act means “cannabis” — hemp included — still remains an illegal drug, with no redeemable value and a high level of abuse. The Farm Bill’s language even acknowledged the conflict [.pdf], where lawmakers nodded to the plant’s status under the CSA but effectively ignored it.