A Hemp Tour of North Carolina

Cherry Wine hemp flower from North Carolina.

Ashley and I took a trip across North Carolina this week. We started in the capital, Raleigh, to attend our oldest son’s freshman college orientation at NC State University (NCSU). NC farmers are growing thousands of acres of industrial hemp this season and Raleigh is set to be a national hub, with NCSU at the center of research and development.

From there we went to Burlington, where I conducted an in-service educational conference on CBD and hemp to five law enforcement agencies with an all-star cast: Bob Crumley of Founder’s Hemp, Justin Hamilton of Hempleton, the Hemp Farmacy, and East Coast Genetics, and Dr. James Taylor of the Integrated Pain Solutions clinic. Lee Van Tine of the Hookah Hookup chain of retail stores in the Southeast also came and answered questions. It was educational for everyone. Law enforcement was unhappy about the rapidly booming market in hemp flower and hemp pre-rolls due to the difficulties in enforcement they perceived it would create with respect to NC’s marijuana laws. We discussed solutions and built a bridge with these agencies, who were receptive enough to invite us to speak with them. We appreciate their interest and willingness to get educated about the industry.

On Thursday, Ashley and I went to Wilmington, a coastal city that happens to be emerging as a major center for industrial hemp, largely due to the efforts of Justin Hamilton and his Hempleton empire. Justin and his assistant, Summer, took us on a tour. We visited two of his Hemp Farmacy locations, toured his distribution facility, and were treated to an informative tour of Castle Hayne Farms by one of its founders, Edwin Vandebovenkamp. We heard fascinating information about the phenotype research he’s conducting on the Cherry Wine strain. Here are some pictures:

Rod stands with Justin Hamilton in front of the original Hemp Farmacy in Wilmington, NC.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the greenhouses for industrial hemp at Castle Hayne Farms in Wilmington, NC.
Edwin Vandebovenkamp of Castle Haynes Farms discusses Hemp research.

Finally, on Thursday night I was honored to be awarded the William Thorp Pro Bono Service Award at the 2018 Annual Meeting of the NC Bar Association. Special thanks to my mother and step-father for taking the 4.5 hour drive from my hometown of Augusta, GA to be there with me. Extra special thanks to my wife and office manager, Ashley, for the tireless hours she spent working on these cases with me. Here is a picture of the event:

Rod receives William Thorp Pro Bono Award.

A lot is happening in NC and I’m excited to be part of it. Stay tuned…

Rod Kight is a lawyer based in Asheville, NC. He is licensed in North Carolina and Oregon and represents legal cannabis businesses. You can contact him by clicking here.

 

4 comments on “A Hemp Tour of North CarolinaAdd yours →

  1. Can you share how law enforcement is leaning regarding sales of hemp bud and pre-rolled? Unless officers intend to carry THC testing equipment, I’ve wondered what difficulties these hemp products will create for enforcement of marijuana laws.

    1. Good question, Jon. Law enforcement (LE) is not questioning the lawful status of industrial hemp flower. However, LE is understandably concerned about enforcing marijuana laws. Since industrial hemp flower looks and smells like marijuana the traditional notions of probable cause are being upended. To my understanding, LE in NC does not currently have a workable field testing solution. Until such tests arrive, LE will have to develop alternate methods and procedures for determining whether or not probable cause to seize and/or arrest for what appears to be marijuana in a given set of circumstances.

  2. Good question, Jon. Law enforcement (LE) is not questioning the lawful status of industrial hemp flower. However, LE is understandably concerned about enforcing marijuana laws. Since industrial hemp flower looks and smells like marijuana the traditional notions of probable cause are being upended. To my understanding, LE in NC does not currently have a workable field testing solution. Until such tests arrive, LE will have to develop alternate methods and procedures for determining whether or not probable cause to seize and/or arrest for what appears to be marijuana in a given set of circumstances.

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