The planet’s air may well contain higher than average levels of THC due to 4/20 celebrations, but let’s not forget that cannabis is far from out of the woods when it comes to arbitrary government surveillance. On Monday, the US Postal Service published a notice stating that people can’t use its services to ship CBD vapes, Marijuana Moment reports.
USPS clarified it was still considering whether hemp-derived products would qualify for the restriction. But didn’t hemp become federally legal with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill? What gives?
While it’s true that President Donald Trump signed the Agricultural Improvement Act (also known as the Farm Bill) in December of 2018, the law did not make hemp as fancy-free, legally speaking, as corn or tomatoes.
And the law certainly does not exempt hemp from any controlled substance laws that individual states might have. Many states have their own drug schedules, although some do automatically follow federal guidelines in the matter. As of last year, 10 states still prohibit the use of cannabis-based CBD products: Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas.
So basically, even if your cannabis product contains less than .3 percent THC, which is necessary under federal law to be considered hemp, you could be subject to certain restrictions. In fact, even if your product doesn’t contain any cannabis at all, but is a vaporizer that falls under the definition of, “any electronic device that, through an aerosolized solution, delivers nicotine, flavor, or any other substance to the user inhaling from the device,” federal law suggests it might be subject to certain limitations on how it's able to be shipped.
That means companies whose business models rely on regularly shipping hemp or hemp-related products may need to pivot — or deal with sharp increases in the cost of getting products to customers. It’s uncertain whether the USPS will go down this CBD-free route. The postal service says it’s giving producers a heads up just in case it determines that these federally legal products cannot be shipped using the federal postal agency. Should it come to that conclusion, the moratorium would go into effect immediately, which means punishments will, too.
The notice underlines the fact that THC products may not be shipped by USPS, as they continue to be subject to federal prohibition.
There were even shots fired over the practice of shipping say, your old copies of High Times Magazine. The notice says that it is, “unlawful to mail advertisements for, or to advertise the mailing of, federally controlled substances or drug paraphernalia.” In 2015, a USPS office in Portland, Oregon published a memo suggesting that even straight newspapers with cannabis ads in them could be a violation of federal law if people used the government postal service to send them.
It advises that should such a ban come to pass, companies may be able to apply for an exemption on the grounds that they are a legal business. Required documentation could include, “laboratory test results, licenses, and compliance reports.”