Amendment to military funding bill would allow soldiers to openly use CBD products

The amendment was put forward by Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-HI, and was attached to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that was passed this week by a 336-71 vote. 

Amendment put forward by noted hemp advocate

Gabbard, who is a military veteran and who also was briefly one of the candidates for the 2020 Democratic Presidential nomination, has advocated for the hemp industry in the past. In 2019 she introduced the ‘Hemp for Victory Act,’ which her office said was meant to incentivize family farms to get into the hemp growing arena and sought to protect them against large corporate players. The bill, which did not make it out of the House Subcommittee on Health, was deliberately styled after the World War II victory gardens effort.

The NDAA now goes to the Senate for further debate.  While the future of the CBD amendment is unclear, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY, is a noted friend of the sector, having sponsored legislation in the past on behalf of the thriving hemp growing and processing industry within his state.

Gabbard’s amendment says that a “member of the Armed Forces”​ may not be prohibited from ”the possession, use, or consumption”​ of hemp or hemp-derived product to as long as the crop meets federal standards. 

In addition, the possession, use, and consumption of such products must be “in compliance with applicable Federal, State, and local law.”

Hemp advocates: Recognition is overdue

Steve Hoffman, principal in the firm Compass Natural Marketing, said the news was welcome and potentially could open a new door in preventive health care for members of the military.  Hoffman has a long history working on hemp issues, having helped with communications on some of the early state cannabis initiatives that first opened the door to the trade.