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Marijuana’s boring “other half” has the health industry dancing.

Cannabidiol, known in the trade as “CBD” is a compound of the cannabis plant with medical benefit, and less than 0.3 present of THC, the plant's psychoactive ingredient. So, what’s the noise? CBD oil is an excellent compound to alleviate anxiety and depression, said Martin A. Lee, director of the non-profit cannabis research group Project CBD and author of “Smoke Signals: A Social History of Marijuana.” Popular for pain and used to treat cancer, Crohn’s, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, PTSD, cardiovascular diseases, antibiotic-resistant infections, multiple sclerosis and schizophrenia, the oil appears to be the perfect elixir. Whether the claims are true or not requires many years of study and research, which would have been done if the federal government had an open mind to its potential. Instead, the federal government said, in essence, marijuana is illegal and tests to determine its medical value are prohibited by law. Extensive pre-clinal research and studies abroad declare that CDB works, and has approved it for chronic pain in more than two dozen countries. Meanwhile, the FDA approved the drug Epidiolex, whose active ingredient is CBD oil, for use in controlling seizures in children. What a shame, the federal government knew marijuana’s medical value since the 1920s, but remain “dead-in-the-water” by declaring “marijuana is a menace to society.” Well, is it legal? Hell no! Despite its widespread use, CBD is illegal. The twisted reason: Because the marijuana plant, which is classified by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration as a substance with “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” Thus, CBD requires strict control. The long shallow of the federal government is present even states that sanctioned marijuana its use. States like California and Colorado, where marijuana is legal on the state level, dispensaries could technically closed at any time by the federal government. Federal lawmakers have finally seen the writing- on- the- wall, to finalize a 2018 Farm Bill, sponsored by Senator Mitch McConnell that removes hemp from the controlled substance list, allowing it to grown legally on a large scale. Approval on the bill may happen by year’s end. That event would be onlyhalf of the equation. The FDA may still bark about regulating CBD oil. At First Jersey Cannabis, we plan to conduct research and laboratory study outside of the United States to determine the feasibility of growing hemp in New Jersey and develop a proprietary extraction process to product CBD oil. Naturally, we are anxiously waiting for direction on the McConnell Farm Bill.

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