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hemp seed marijuana

Hemp seed marijuana
Hemp and marijuana are, taxonomically speaking, the same plant; they are different names for the same genus (Cannabis) and species.

Is hemp the same thing as marijuana?

There’s been a lot of discussion about hemp recently, since the 2018 Farm Bill made it legal for farmers to grow industrial hemp for the first time since the passage of the 1970 Controlled Substances Act (or, practically speaking, since the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act).

There are still quite a few restrictions and regulations associated with growing hemp, but the fact that hemp is now legal – while marijuana is not – has raised a lot of questions.

NC State’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and NC State Extension, are engaged in a variety of research and educational programs related to hemp. That puts us in a position to help answer some of the most common hemp questions.

What’s the difference between hemp and marijuana?

Hemp and marijuana are, taxonomically speaking, the same plant; they are different names for the same genus (Cannabis) and species.

“Hemp and marijuana even look and smell the same,” says Tom Melton, deputy director of NC State Extension. “The difference is that hemp plants contain no more than 0.3 percent (by dry weight) of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive substance found in marijuana. By comparison, marijuana typically contains 5 to 20 percent THC. You can’t get high on hemp.”

In other words, Cannabis plants with 0.3 percent or less of THC are hemp. Cannabis plants with more than 0.3 percent THC are marijuana.

Is it now legal to grow hemp in North Carolina?

It is legal to grow hemp, but you must be licensed.

In North Carolina, licenses must be approved by the state’s Industrial Hemp Commission, which is affiliated with the N.C. Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services. Licensed growers must abide by stringent regulations, including tests to ensure that the THC levels in any hemp remain at or below the limit of 0.3 percent.

Why is there interest in growing hemp?

In short, the answer is that farmers grow things for which there is a market – and there appears to be a market for industrial hemp.

“Many see industrial hemp as a rapidly growing industry and a way to replace losses in acreage or value in other commodities,” Melton says.

What are some benefits and uses of hemp?

Industrial hemp has many potential uses. Hemp fibers can be used in textiles or industrial processes. Hemp can also be used for grain, and the flowers are often used as a source for cannabidiol, a hemp extract also known as CBD.

“Ninety-five percent of North Carolina hemp crops are grown for their flowers,” Melton says. “CBD is widely acclaimed for use in addressing many aches, pains and mental disorders. However, there is little data supporting many of the claims.”

And the regulatory requirements related to CBD can be confusing.

Is growing hemp for CBD legal?

“Growing hemp for its flowers was already legal, prior to the 2018 Farm Bill, under the 2014 Farm Bill,” Melton says. “The 2014 Farm Bill allowed states to have Industrial Hemp Pilot Research Programs, under which any part of the hemp plant could be produced by a licensed grower.

Hemp seed marijuana
Hemp seed oil will be listed as cannabis sativa seed oil. CBD will be listed as cannabidiol, full-spectrum hemp, hemp oil, PCR (phytocannabinoid rich) or PCR hemp extracts.

CBD Oil vs. Hemp Seed: How to Know What You’re Paying For

In 2018, a farm bill passed making industrial hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) legal nationwide. Because of this, there’s been a “green rush” of cannabis-inspired products flooding the market — including beauty products.

While CBD is a new ingredient to many consumers (since it’s now more readily available), hempseed oil has been around for decades and sold at health food stores for both cooking and skincare. However, when CBD and hempseed oil are put side by side, a lot of misleading labeling happens.

First, a Cannabis species (Cannabaceae) breakdown

To filter through the CBD marketing, here’s a cannabis breakdown: Cannabis (often referred to as marijuana) and hemp are two varieties of the same plant species, cannabis sativa.

Since they share the same species name, they’re often lumped into one big family and there seems to be a lot of confusion around their differences.

Marijuana Hemp Hemp seeds (cannabis sativa seed oil)
produces tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) at 20%+ levels (the psychoactive compound that makes a person feel “high.”) has to be less than 0.3% THC to be sold legally 0% THC, trace amounts of CBD
produces CBD at 10%+ levels produces CBD at 20%+ used as food such as hempseed milk, granola, and more
medicinal and therapeutic uses for chronic pain, mental health, and illnesses stalks of the hemp plant can produce clothing, rope, paper, fuel, home insulation. (the list goes on and on) cold-pressed for oil production that can be used in cooking, beauty products, and even in paint

Why this matters in the beauty world

Hempseed oil and CBD oil are both trendy ingredients used topically in skincare products.

Hempseed oil, in particular, is known to not clog pores, be anti-inflammatory, and provide superior moisturization to keep the skin looking and feeling supple. It can be used within a product or even just on the skin as a face oil.

New research is coming out all the time about the skin benefits of CBD. What we know so far is like it’s cousin, hempseed oil, it’s been shown to be a powerful anti-inflammatory which helps in healing acne, sensitive skin, rashes, eczema, and psoriasis. It also packs a ton of antioxidants.

But is CBD beauty actually more effective or worth paying more for?

It’s still too early to tell, and results can vary depending on the person. If there’s a beauty brand making such claims, you may want to do extra consumer research as brands aren’t obligated to tell you how much CBD is in a product.

The tricky marketing tactic behind hempseed oil

With the green rush, some brands are jumping on cannabis-infused beauty products but mixing the terms up — intentionally or not. Since CBD and hempseed oil are in the same cannabis family, they’re often incorrectly marketed as the same thing.

Why would a brand do this? Simply put, consumers are willing to pay more for CBD oil, which is a pretty expensive ingredient compared to hempseed oil.

It’s easy for a brand to add hempseed oil to a product, adorn it with marijuana leaves, and highlight the word cannabis to make consumers think they’re receiving a CBD product that contains no actual CBD at all.

And paying a premium I might add!

So how can you tell what you’re purchasing? It’s pretty simple actually, check the ingredient list.

Hemp seed oil will be listed as cannabis sativa seed oil. CBD will be listed as cannabidiol, full-spectrum hemp, hemp oil, PCR (phytocannabinoid rich) or PCR hemp extracts.

While it’s not required to see the milligrams listed on the bottle, it has become a common practice to do so. If it’s not, you should wonder what’s in that bottle you’re paying for.

It’s so important to be an educated, savvy consumer. Don’t fall into the trap of weed washing (hemp-based product hype)!

Is CBD Legal? Marijuana-derived CBD products are illegal on the federal level, but are legal under some state laws. Hemp-derived CBD products (with less than 0.3 percent THC) are legal on the federal level, but are still illegal under some state laws. Check your state’s laws and those of anywhere you travel. Keep in mind that nonprescription CBD products are not FDA-approved, and may be inaccurately labeled.

Dana Murray is a licensed aesthetician from Southern California with a passion for skin care science. She’s worked in skin education, from helping others with their skin to developing products for beauty brands. Her experience extends over 15 years and an estimated 10,000 facials. She’s been using her knowledge to blog about skin and bust skin myths on her Instagram since 2016.