Cannabis will soon become legal in Virginia and the new legislation includes a provision for hemp. The state’s governor recently signed it into law, making Virginia one of just three states to legalize cannabis possession alongside Colorado and Massachusetts. How this move could influence the cannabis industry is up for debate, but it may even create opportunities not yet seen in North America.
The “virginia legalization 2021” is the newest law in the state of Virginia. The new law allows for possession of cannabis, but it has some restrictions.
On July 1, a host of new state laws went into force in Virginia, including new rules regulating cannabis use, death penalty, open carry of firearms, and littering, among other things. The cannabis legislation, which allows people 21 and older to possess up to one ounce of marijuana (without intent to sell) and cultivate up to four marijuana plants in their homes, is the most well-known of these. Possession of more than an ounce but less than a pound is punishable by a $25 fine, whereas possession of more than a pound is a crime punishable by a 10-year term and a fine of $250,000.
Adults are allowed to consume marijuana in private homes but not in public, and it may only be transported in the passenger section of a moving vehicle in “the originally sealed manufacturer’s container.” However, neither this limitation nor the right to cultivate your own plants pose a problem, since no component of the marijuana plant, including seeds or flowers, will be allowed to purchase or sell until January 2024. Adults may “share” cannabis, but they may not “give” it in conjunction with another retail item to circumvent the law.
In anticipation of a legalized market for marijuana on the horizon, Virginia hemp growers are considering their options for expansion. While many people think of cannabis and marijuana as synonymous terms, cannabis is actually a large plant genus that encompasses both psychoactive marijuana and hemp—a versatile plant that can be used to make products from textiles to biofuels and whose seeds and oil are used in skin care products and non-intoxicating edible infusions. The defining line between the two cannabis varieties is the precise level of the toxicant THC present in the plant, which must be 0.3% or less for hemp.
Albemarle Hemp Company, located in White Hall, was established in 2019 by Leigh Anne and Joe Kuhn, and recently changed their name to Albemarle Cannabis Company (ACC), in part to fight the stigma associated with the term cannabis, and in part to look forward. “In the future, we’d want to explore if we can extend our repertory to include marijuana cannabis,” said Leigh Anne Kuhn. “We’re waiting for clear definitions of how this will work for businesses like ours, but we know it’ll be a long process with a lot of red tape and costly permits.”
To make CBD gummies, dog treats, and bubble bath, ACC works with a vertically integrated supply chain of local growers and farmers. Kuhn says the business expects to enter the marijuana industry if it is legalized, but that its plans are still flexible, and that professionalism and honesty are critical in both present and future cannabis endeavors.
“When people think of marijuana, they still think of Cheech and Chong, which is a very incorrect picture that we’re trying to change,” Kuhn said. “I’m intending to collaborate closely with, if not directly on, one or more of the regulatory bodies that will be established to oversee sales. My understanding is that their goal is to spend 30% of tax revenues back into local communities, which I think is fantastic.”
Virginia has recently passed a law that will allow residents to legally possess cannabis. The new laws also include the legalization of recreational and medical cannabis, as well as decriminalization for possession of small amounts. Reference: va legalization.
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