Border seizures of hemp continue regardless of legalization, lawsuit, importer says

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This story has been updated with a section discussing new import/export guidelines on reside hemp plants.

A California CBD manufacturer difficult the hemp policies of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency says hemp seizures are nevertheless taking spot regardless of nationwide legalization and a federal judge’s assurance that border seizures of legal hemp are a point of the previous.

Revolutionary Nutraceuticals is attempting to maintain alive its claims against the federal government for seizing raw hemp the business was attempting to get from Spain to its Lake Elsinore place for extraction.

The federal government asked the court to dismiss a lot of Revolutionary Nutraceuticals’ case, saying in September that Revolutionary Nutraceuticals “has not alleged that it is in imminent danger of suffering an injury.”

But the CBD company said in a response filed this week that customs officials “have created it clear that that if (companies) import these lawful solutions into the United States, they will continue to seize the property and impose fines and penalties.”

No certain examples of ongoing seizures had been cited.

Border confusion

The threat of seizures comes regardless of the 2018 Farm Bill, which removed all hemp components from the Controlled Substances Act, not just the seeds and stems.

The alter indicates that hemp and CBD are legal to import and export as lengthy as the solutions meet federal requirements – which means they have to include significantly less than .three% THC.

Nevertheless, hemp is routinely seized and destroyed at ports, borders and airports, according to lawyers who represent cannabis clientele.

“These are violations of the 2018 Farm Bill,” stated Michael Chernis, Revolutionary Nutraceuticals’ lawyer.

Chernis stated he’s heard from other CBD companies that have been hurt by wrongful customs seizures in current months. A judge’s pronouncement in April that the border difficulty for hemp imports is “moot” proved unrealistic.

“The government is just throwing up all these roadblocks (for importing hemp). A lot of them are far-fetched,” Chernis told Hemp Sector Everyday.

The court has not set a date to determine whether or not to dismiss the company’s lawsuit.

New guidelines for reside plants

Revolutionary Nutraceuticals’ lawsuit comes as U.S. agriculture regulators are altering the guidelines for how reside hemp plants, not biomass, can be imported.

The U.S. Division of Agriculture stated earlier this month that living hemp plants and clones – not just seeds – can be imported from other  nations. The new guidelines clarify a confusing landscape for hemp companies owners who no longer necessary permits from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to move living hemp and viable seeds across national borders, but had no clear path how to do it.

The new USDA policy on reside hemp imports sets distinct guidelines for importing hemp plants from Canada, and for importing hemp plants from any other nation. The guidelines have important variations:

  • Canadian hemp plants have to come with a phytosanitary certificate from the Canadian Meals Inspection Agency, which verifies plant origins and certifies that plants are no cost of illness.
  • Hemp plants from all other nations have to come with a phytosanitary certificate from the nation of origin, along with a federal permit made use of for importing reside plant material of any sort.

Kristen Nichols can be reached at [email protected]

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