HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Wednesday’s congressional passage of the Agricultural Improvement Act (or farm bill) could mean many things for the Tennessee Valley, but one is the legalization of cannabidiol (CBD) in Alabama.
The Alabama attorney general’s office released a statement which said in part, “as a result of this Congressional action, CBD derived from industrial hemp, with a THC concentration of not more than .3%, can be legally produced, sold, and possessed in the State of Alabama.”
President Donald Trump still needs to sign the farm bill into law, but he is widely expected to do so in the near future.
CBD is a chemical component which can be derived from marijuana or industrialized hemp. However, it does not provide the “high" associated with marijuana and its active ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
If the President signs the farm bill, CBD with a THC concentration of more than .3% would still be illegal in Alabama. The state does have exceptions, which are outlined in Carly’s Law, Leni’s Law and the prescription drug Epidiolex.
[READ MORE: Leni’s Law: How do you know if you can get CBD oil?]
A variety of CBD products are currently available in states where it’s legal (including Tennessee) and are used as wellness products and medicines.
Huntsville chiropractor Dr. Charles Brown said the passage of the Farm bill will save some of his patients a trip up the parkway to purchase (and bring south illegally) medicine that could help them.
“I had a patient that was involved in a horrific car accident due to having had a seizure while driving, because it was illegal in Alabama and it was not illegal in Tennessee,” he said.
Brown said he will immediately begin recommending CBD products to his patients to help treat their pain.
“As a supplement it has the ability to help with conditions like anxiety, PTSD, seizures, pain, inflammation,” he said.
Brown said he was recommending CBD products (without THC) to his patients before the Alabama state government made it clear CBD products (even without THC) were illegal.
“There were some really good results, fantastic results as least anecdotally,” he said.
Brown said the Valley’s large veteran community could benefit as well.
“This community, we have a lot of guys who are ex-military, been through numerous deployments. Whether that’s Iraq, Afghanistan and it seems to have had a very beneficial effect there,” he said.
He stressed that CBD is not a cure-all, but rather a “supplement” that could help with treatments.
Huntsville native Harley Kenney is the owner of the “Your CBD Store” in Fayetteville, Tennessee, just off Memorial Parkway.
Kenney said the Farm bill will help expand his business to his hometown.
“I’m going to meet them tomorrow at city hall. With the Attorney General signing off on it and making it legal in Alabama, I want to be the first one to market, the first one to come to Madison County to offer some help and benefits,” he said.
His Fayetteville store offers CBD in water, coffee, tea, edible, lotion, and cream form among others. It also offers CBD products for pets.
He said word of mouth has been helping the business since its opening in November.
“Every single day we’re getting more people, ‘hey my mom heard about you, my dad came and bought some things, my cousin just left,'” he said.
He said it’s part of a national trend that is defying age limits.
“I probably don’t see someone under 25 to 30 once a week. It’s mostly probably in the 30 to 80 range,” he said.
He said he anticipates Huntsville’s large population to be receptive to CBD, and he intends to find out.