Republican lawmakers have introduced bills that would essentially kill Florida’s booming hemp industry.

House Bill HB 1475 written by Florida State representative Will Robinson and Senate Bill SB 1676 written by Florida State Senator Colleen Burton. One of the biggest concerns is that the bill would create millions of felons overnight. Because the bill includes a ban on the sale and possession of federally legal hemp products such as Hemp derived Delta 8, Delta 9, and THCA flower, anyone who currently owns or uses such products could be committing a felony if the bill were to become law. This would include many ordinary citizens who use hemp products for health and wellness purposes and who do not wish to enter the Florida medical cannabis registry.

Republican FL State Rep. Will Robinson
Republican FL State Senator Colleen Burton

The consequences of this could be devastating. Felons are often barred from voting, obtaining certain jobs, and accessing government assistance programs. A sudden influx of millions of felons could overwhelm the criminal justice system and create long-lasting social and economic problems.

In addition to the new crimes this bill would create, the bill would also ban a wide range of hemp products. Some of the products that would be affected include:

Hemp-derived delta 8 and 9 edibles

Hemp-derived delta 8 vapes

CBD and CBD Edibles

THCA Hemp Flower

An example of products that would be banned. – Siesta G Hemp derived Delta 8 edibles

The proposal, filed last week, has already begun to draw criticism from Hemp Entrepreneurs and cannabis advocacy groups who argue it violates free market freedoms and enriches the already highly criticized cannabis MSOs (multi-state cannabis operators).

Carlos Hermida Owner and Founder of Chillum Mushroom and Hemp Dispensary in Ybor City

Outlawing THC based hemp is simply going to create a new black market in Florida. Rather than shipping drugs in from other drug dealers from out of state all people would have to do is visit a gas station right outside our state lines. It’s much safer just to regulate the business we have in place. – Carlos Hermida Owner and Founder of Chillum Mushroom and Hemp Dispensary in Ybor City

It is unclear how far the proposal will go in the GOP-controlled statehouse during the current legislative session, which begins Tuesday. Canna Chronicle reached out to Robinson and Burton for comment. 

Sources familiar with the matter have alleged that a major Florida cannabis MSO is behind these bills to protect their business.