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Legalizing hemp in Ohio is good for medicinal users, growers and sellers

Manufacture and sale of CBD products gets green light
Posted at 9:59 PM, Jul 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-31 02:54:16-04

ANDERSON TOWNSHIP, Ohio  — The open sign is now lit at Your CBD Store on Beechmont Avenue. The timing is perfect because just 10 minutes before the ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday, Gov. Mike DeWine signed a bill that allows for the cultivation of industrial hemp and legalizes the manufacture and sale of CBD products derived from the plant.

That’s good news for people who use hemp’s CBD oils for medicinal purposes and good news for sellers and growers, because it will be OK for anyone to grow hemp once the Ohio Department of Agriculture sets the rules.

“When they know officially that the legalization in Ohio is 100% official, we’re going to get a lot more people coming through the door with questions,” said Dave Arend, Anderson store president and CEO.

Arend’s mother, who has arthritis, and son, who has ADHD, swear by the medicinal value of CBD oils.

“I do hair at a retirement community part-time. I was to the point where I wasn’t able to hold onto a roller or a curling iron, a blow dryer,” said Lois Arend. “Dave told me to try CBD oil and see … I’m pain free. Pain free.”

“After Christmas break, I got back and it was just drastic improvement from the start,” said Jacob Arend.

Hemp is a cannabis plant like marijuana, but hemp does not produce the same intoxicating effect. Hemp must contain less than .3% THC, the compound that gets marijuana users high.

RELATED: Understanding the difference between THC and CBD.

How does CBD oil work in the body?

“Basically CBD is a cannabinoid. The human endocannabinoid system was discovered in 1991 by scientists, so it is something that we produce naturally, just most people don’t produce the right amounts,” Arend said.

“The older that you get, the less of it you produce. So just basically using those products allows that system to function and communicate and regulate itself. Plus it’s shown to take inflammation out of the body and brain. Once you relieve inflammation, you’re opening the door to helping out with probably 50 to 60 different elements.”

Unlike the tight limit on legal marijuana growers, anyone will be able to apply for a license to grow hemp. But the state Department of Agriculture, which is in charge of creating rules about the application process, says it will take six months for that.

“The Department of Agriculture will begin growing hemp both indoor and outdoor this week so that we can have an opportunity to show farmers how to grow it. There’s a specific process,” said Dorothy Pelanda, department director.

Education is a big part of this — for the agriculture department and Your CBD Store.

“We’re currently the fastest-growing CBD chain in the country because we got a very high quality product and we have doctors that educate people on this,” Dave Arend said.

Pelanda has traveled to different states finding ways to ensure that farmers plant seeds that are low in THC.

“I think it’s in our best interest to create a list of prohibited seeds because we all want farmers to be successful,” Pelanda said.

That’s why the agriculture department is working with any college that will apply — including Ohio State University — to research which seeds will grow best in which regions.

Pelanda said members of her Food Safety Division started traveling the state Tuesday pulling samples of CBD products off the shelves to make sure they’re labeled appropriately.

Arend said his CBD store chain has three local stores, including the West Side and Northern Kentucky, and is about to sign a lease on a store in the Mason-West Chester area.