By Anthony Martinelli

Legislation to legalize industrial hemp in Alaska has been passed by the state’s full legislature, sending it to Governor Bill Walker for consideration.

Senate Bill 6 – filed by Senator Shelley Hughes – was passed today by the Alaska Senate today in a unanimous 18 to 0 vote. The vote comes just a few days after the House of Representatives approved the bill, also unanimously (36 to 0). The measure now goes to Governor Walker, who can sign the measure into law, allow it to become law without his signature, or veto it (though the legislature can overturn a veto with a 2/3rds majority).

The proposed law legalizes industrial hemp by separating hemp from the definition of marijuana. This would remove hemp from the state’s controlled substances list, allowing it to be grown as an agricultural commodity. Senate Bill 6 also clarified that “cannabidiol oil is not included in the definition of “hashish oil””,and clarifies that “adding industrial hemp to food does not create an adulterated food product”.

“It was time to remove hemp from the marijuana statutes,” Hughes said. “There’s no psychoactive impact from hemp. If you were to smoke acres and acres and acres of hemp, all you would get would be a sore throat and a cough.”

Hughes continues; “I just want to use Alaska hemp. It’s been frustrating for us, just because our business is entirely made up of products that we wild-craft or grow ourselves. And so the hemp seed oil, that would just change everything for us, to have it completely Alaska-grown and made herbs and plants in our products.”

The full text of Senate Bill 6 can be found by clicking here.

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