A new Arkansas law aiming to ban hemp-derived psychoactive cannabinoids including delta-8 THC is being challenged in court amid accusations it violates the 2018 Farm Bill.
Act 629 came into effect on August 1, 2023, effectively banning the production and sale of products containing delta-8, delta-9 and delta-10 THC and other variations of the cannabinoids inside the state of Arkansas.
The controversial act also includes provisions to regulate psychoactive, hemp derived products in the event that the proposed ban is overturned by the courts, meaning wholesalers distributors and retailers would be required to obtain a permit from local authorities costing $5000 per year.
Both the ban and this proposed regulatory plan are now being challenged by a group of four hemp businesses, who filed a lawsuit in the federal court in Little Rock on Monday, High Times reported.
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The plaintiffs, Bio Gen, Drippers Vape Shop, The Cigarette Store (which trades as Smoker Friendly) and Sky Marketing Corporation (which trades as Hometown Hero), are calling for an injunction to block Act 629, arguing that it is not compatible with the US Constitution’s commerce and supremacy clauses and is a violation of the 2018 Farm Bill.
Cynthia Cabrera, chief strategy officer at Hometown Hero CBD, told High Times: “Businesses like Hometown Hero invested in Arkansas in part relying on the state’s declared public policy to position itself at ‘the forefront of industrial hemp production, development, and commercialization.’
“And overnight, Act 629 turned farmers into felons and retailers into drug dealers—all in violation of federal law. Ultimately, we would like to see reasonable regulation that allows businesses to grow and thrive while allowing adult consumers access to safe, legal hemp-derived products.”