“Folks at the various state Departments of Agriculture are so excited to bring in hemp – excited to introduce any crop, really, and especially to reintroduce this extraordinarily versatile one,” Beckerman said. “But they’re not experts; they’re learning like anybody else. So getting in there, looking at proposed legislation and rules to make sure [proposals] actually make sense for the crop – on an agronomic level, on a regulatory level – and monitoring changes to that legislation, regulation, or industry, is common sense.” She went on,
Pinfold Consulting. 1998. (G. Pinfold Consulting Economists Ltd. and J. White, InfoResults Ltd.). A maritime industrial hemp product marketing study. Prepared for Nova Scotia Agriculture and Marketing (Marketing and Food Industry Development), and New Brunswick Agriculture & Rural Development (Marketing and Business Development). agri.gov.ns.ca/pt/agron/hemp/hempms.htm

The more recently House-approved version, which introduced the well-publicized provision affecting up to two million Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients, doesn't take such steps to remove federal barriers around hemp. It also stipulates that anyone with a felony drug conviction would be barred indefinitely from participating in federal or state hemp programs.
Synthetic cannabis is illegal in New Zealand. It is designed to imitate the effects of cannabis and is usually dried plant material sprayed with chemicals known as synthetic cannabinoids. It is also available in liquid form. Little is known about the chemicals used in synthetic cannabis and the effects can be unpredictable, especially when mixed with other substances.
Cannabis contains a seemingly unique class of chemicals, the cannabinoids, of which more than 60 have been described, but only a few are psychoactive. Cannabinoids are produced in specialized epidermal glands, which differ notably in distribution on different organs of the plant (high concentrations occur on the upper surface of the young leaves and young twigs, on the tepals, stamens, and especially on the perigonal bract). Given this distribution, the glands would seem to be protective of young and reproductive above-ground tissues (the roots lack glands). Two classes of epidermal glands occur—stalked and sessile (Fig. 8), but in either case the glandular cells are covered by a sheath under which resin is accumulated, until the sheath ruptures, releasing resin on the surface. The resin is a sticky mixture of cannabinoids and a variety of terpenes. The characteristic odor of the plant is due to the abundant terpenes, which are not psychoactive. The more important cannabinoids are shown in Fig. 9. In the plant the cannabinoids exist predominantly in the form of carboxylic acids, which decarboxylate with time or when heated. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (D9-THC, or simply THC) is the predominant psychoactive component. Other THC isomers also occur, particularly D8-THC, which is also psychoactive. Technically, the euphoric psychological effects of THC are best described by the word psychotomimetic. Cannabidiol (CBD) is the chief non-psychotomimetic cannabinoid. A THC concentration in marijuana of approximately 0.9% has been suggested as a practical minimum level to achieve the (illegal) intoxicant effect, but CBD (the predominant cannabinoid of fiber and oilseed varieties) antagonizes (i.e. reduces) the effects of THC (Grotenhermen and Karus 1998). Concentrations of 0.3% to 0.9% are considered to have “only a small drug potential” (Grotenhermen and Karus 1998). Some cannabinoid races have been described, notably containing cannabichromene (particularly in high-THC forms) and cannabigerol monomethyl ether (in some Asian strains). The biosynthetic pathways of the cannabinoids are not yet satisfactorily elucidated, although the scheme shown in Fig. 10 is commonly accepted. At least in some strains, THC is derived from cannabigerol, while in others it may be derived from CBD. CBN and D8-THC are considered to be degradation products or analytical artifacts (Pate 1998a).
There is a general inverse relationship in the resin of Cannabis between the amounts of THC present and the amount of the other principal cannabinoid, CBD. Whereas most drug strains contain primarily THC and little or no CBD, fiber and oilseed strains primarily contain CBD and very little THC. CBD can be converted to THC by acid catalyzed cyclization, and so could serve as a starting material for manufacturing THC. In theory, therefore, low-THC cultivars do not completely solve the problem of drug abuse potential. In practice, however, the illicit drug trade has access to easier methods of synthesizing THC or its analogues than by first extracting CBD from non-drug hemp strains.
^ Jump up to: a b Batalla A, Bhattacharyya S, Yücel M, Fusar-Poli P, Crippa JA, Nogué S, Torrens M, Pujol J, Farré M, Martin-Santos R (2013). "Structural and functional imaging studies in chronic cannabis users: a systematic review of adolescent and adult findings". PLOS One. 8 (2): e55821. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0055821. PMC 3563634. PMID 23390554. The most consistently reported brain alteration was reduced hippocampal volume which was shown to persist even after several months of abstinence in one study and also to be related to the amount of cannabis use Other frequently reported morphological brain alterations related to chronic cannabis use were reported in the amygdala the cerebellum and the frontal cortex...These findings may be interpreted as reflecting neuroadaptation, perhaps indicating the recruitment of additional regions as a compensatory mechanism to maintain normal cognitive performance in response to chronic cannabis exposure, particularly within the prefrontal cortex area.

Cannabis plants produce a unique family of terpeno-phenolic compounds called cannabinoids, some of which produce the "high" which may be experienced from consuming marijuana. There are 483 identifiable chemical constituents known to exist in the cannabis plant,[48] and at least 85 different cannabinoids have been isolated from the plant.[49] The two cannabinoids usually produced in greatest abundance are cannabidiol (CBD) and/or Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), but only THC is psychoactive.[50] Since the early 1970s, Cannabis plants have been categorized by their chemical phenotype or "chemotype", based on the overall amount of THC produced, and on the ratio of THC to CBD.[51] Although overall cannabinoid production is influenced by environmental factors, the THC/CBD ratio is genetically determined and remains fixed throughout the life of a plant.[36] Non-drug plants produce relatively low levels of THC and high levels of CBD, while drug plants produce high levels of THC and low levels of CBD. When plants of these two chemotypes cross-pollinate, the plants in the first filial (F1) generation have an intermediate chemotype and produce intermedite amounts of CBD and THC. Female plants of this chemotype may produce enough THC to be utilized for drug production.[51][52]
Recreational cannabis use centers around one chemical: the psychoactive cannabinoid tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Consuming this chemical induces euphoric and stimulating sensations commonly referred to as a “high.” For most marijuana users, these sensations are pleasurable and enjoyable. For some, however, THC can induce feelings of anxiety and paranoia, especially in large doses.
Images in this summary are used with permission of the author(s), artist, and/or publisher for use within the PDQ summaries only. Permission to use images outside the context of PDQ information must be obtained from the owner(s) and cannot be granted by the National Cancer Institute. Information about using the illustrations in this summary, along with many other cancer-related images, is available in Visuals Online, a collection of over 2,000 scientific images.

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