As the demand for CBD continues to grow massively, there’s one product that is catching the attention of a wide range of people.
Hemp flower is not only proving popular with people interested in the health benefits of CBD, but also recreational cannabis consumers who appreciate its subtle yet relaxing effects.
In fact, as genetics improve – resulting in higher-quality flower becoming more readily available – ever-increasing numbers of people are quite simply falling in love with hemp flower. And the way things are looking, it’s only going to increase.
With that in mind, here are 7 signs that smokable hemp flower is going mainstream…
Before you continue reading, don’t forget to subscribe to the CBD Flowers Weekly newsletter, where we discuss how to identify the best CBD flowers and where to find them.
1. 2019 harvest biggest ever
It has been estimated that 115,000-138,000 acres (46,000-56,000 ha) of hemp will be harvested in the United States this year. And that’s only about half of what’s been planted (much will be lost to crop failure, non-compliance, etc.)
A huge increase from last year, much of the growth is driven by demand for CBD. However, many of these hemp fields will also be dedicated to high-grade, smokable hemp flower. In fact, many licensed high-THC cannabis growers (particularly in Oregon) have made the switch to cultivating hemp as it’s worth more and there are less regulatory obstacles to maneuver.
2. Nate Diaz smoking on UFC
Nate Diaz is one of the most well-known names in the world of mixed martial arts. And earlier this year, in a promotional open workout before his fight in UFC 241 (which Diaz won), Nate appeared smoking a CBD joint.
After taking a few puffs for the cameras, he gave it to his videographer to pass around to the audience. The move was clearly a promotional stint as Diaz sells CBD products, including pre-rolled hemp flower joints with 15% CBD, under his own brand Game Up Nutrition.
3. European countries are taxing it like tobacco
It’s not only the U.S where hemp flower is catching on. In fact, smokable hemp flower has been widely available in most of Europe for a couple of years now. It’s so popular in Switzerland, Luxemburg, Belgium and Austria that their governments have made the decision to cash in on the trend by taxing hemp flower products like tobacco – that’s as much as 25% in Switzerland.
4. The 2018 Farm Bill
Included in the 2018 Farm Bill was the Hemp Farming Act. This act removed reversed decades-old restrictions surrounding hemp (cannabis with less than 0.3% THC by dried weight) from the Controlled Substances Act. Effectively, it made hemp flower federally legal in all 50 states.
Not only that, it also made way for hemp farmers to have access to the national banking system, crop insurance, water rights and federal agricultural grants. The new provisions also allow for the movement of hemp around the country, despite any state laws against hemp flower.
5. Vibrant community on Reddit
You know when something’s becoming popular when it has a fast-growing and very active community on Reddit – one of the top 20 most visited websites on the internet. r/hempflowers has over 15,000 members and counting.
Multiple posts a day feature pictures of trichome-covered hemp flowers, opinions and reviews on various strains and vendors, as well as lots of questions regarding the purchasing and use of hemp flower.
6. Rolling Stone and Leafly report on hemp flowers
Two of the counter-culture’s biggest publications have published stories about hemp flowers in the last few months. Leafly, a database of cannabis strains – featuring breakdowns of terpenes, heritage and reviews – asked if CBD flower is the next big thing in cannabis before reviewing a couple of popular hemp flower vendors.
Rolling Stone, meanwhile, said that CBD has now gone mainstream and explained how and why people all over the country are turning to hemp flower and pre-rolled hemp cigarettes for various reasons. There’s no doubt that these articles garnered lots of attention and increased demand for hemp flower across the board.
7. Indiana’s smokable hemp ban is overturned
Just recently, a ban on smokable hemp flower was overturned in Indiana. It was found by a federal judge to be unconstitutional. The ban was brought into force as hemp can’t easily be distinguished from THC-rich cannabis, posing a problem for law enforcers.
In fact, that is exactly why in some states it’s making laws against THC-rich cannabis difficult to enforce, leading to a reduction in cannabis arrests. However, Louisiana and Texas have also passed laws banning smokable hemp flower or its production, despite how mainstream it’s become.
The CBD industry may be young, but the hemp flower industry is even younger. Hemp was only legalized federally in 2018 and we are only now approaching the fall harvest of 2019.
The total CBD market is predicted to be a $22 billion dollar industry by 2020. This estimation probably doesn’t even take into account the smokable hemp flower market. Hemp flower may be gaining popularity and interest already, but it’s only getting started. Exciting times are ahead for hemp.