Hemp and Cannabis Laws In Florida

Although the consumption of CBD is legal in all fifty states, the law has distinct variances from state to state. Many users may be curious if they are allowed to privately grow hemp, and also how the current federal and state laws are shaping up in regards to the use of THC from cannabis. The answers to these questions are ever evolving and changing since the United States is simultaneously loosening up on ingestion laws (e.g. decriminalization in many areas) while tightening up their regulations concerning cultivation and distribution. Below is a short summary and overview of what the current hemp and cannabis laws look like in everyone’s favorite sunshine state, Florida.

What is hemp and can I grow it privately?

hemp vs marijuana

Hemp is a form of the cannabis plant that is rich in the CBD, but contains less than 0.3% THC. It is currently not legal to grow privately in Florida, and there are only two industrial permits that have been issued. The 2014 farm bill allowed for the growth of hemp by only research agencies and universities. The only legal permits are currently for two respective learning institutions which include University of Florida, and A&M University. The 2018 farm bill has covered some basic details on the use and cultivation of CBD, but the USDA is expected to clarify on regulation practices as of Fall 2019. It is possible by 2020 or 2021, regulations could lessen and private farms could grow hemp.

What is cannabis and can I grow it?

Cannabis is a plant that contains a variety of therapeutic compounds, but also has a psychoactive ingredient known as THC. It is currently illegal to grow marijuana, and/or sell or distribute it. It is also considered a criminal act to possess marijuana in Florida, although the state has local counties that have decriminalized minor possession offenses. Among some of the more populous jurisdictions that have decriminalized the act of carrying less than 20 grams are Miami Dade County, Broward County, West Palm Beach County, and Orlando.

What about medical marijuana?

Florida Medical Marijuana law currently allows the use of cannabis for patients suffering under an umbrella of conditions. Some of the qualifying conditions include Cancer, AIDS/HIV, Seizures, PTSD, ALS, and Crohn’s Disease among others. Florida users that wish to legally enjoy cannabis will need to acquire a medical marijuana card via a licensed physician’s recommendation, and they must get this card renewed every three months by the Department of Florida Health. There are a multitude of state-licensed dispensaries that they will be able to pick their medicine up from there.

Keeping up to date:

It’s important for CBD and THC users to keep up to date on the newest laws and regulations regarding possession, distribution and selling at all times. State and federal laws do not always match, and laws change from state to state so be mindful to look up all the nuances prior to traveling with cannabis or hemp. Watch for updates and be sure to check your local jurisdiction for even more precise clarification on criminal vs permissible use.