S01 E03 – Total THC in Hemp

Announcer: Information provided on this podcast does not, and is not intended to constitute legal advice. All information, content and materials available on this podcast are for entertainment purposes only. The views and opinions expressed are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Cultiva Law. Now, without further ado, here are your exquisite esquires, Mio Asami and Fabiola Jimenez.

Fabiola Jimenez: What up, squad?

Mio Asami: What up, squad?

Fabiola Jimenez: Hell yeah. So you’re back.

Mio Asami: We are back, episode three.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yeah. So welcome back to-

Mio Asami: It’s been a while.

Fabiola Jimenez: … Cultivating Conversations with me, Fabi Jimenez.

Mio Asami: And Mio Asami.

Fabiola Jimenez: All right, so today we’re going to be talking about… Dun dun dun, Total THC versus Delta 9.

Mio Asami: In hemp.

Fabiola Jimenez: In hemp and what the fuck does that mean?

Mio Asami: This is not cannabis. Yes we are cannabis attorneys, but we also deal with hemp.

Fabiola Jimenez: And CBD for all you other folk out there.

Mio Asami: Yes.

Fabiola Jimenez: So per usual, we’re going to be doing our four points, the USDA current situation, state-by-state overview, science and practical application issues. And finally, for any of the other random questions that we don’t know as within the hemp industry, we have the one and only Chris Girard, hes done a lot over the years in hemp and cannabis, and he is a wealth of knowledge. He has been in this industry for a really, really, really long time. And so we’re super, super happy that he’s part of the Cultiva team. And he’s joining us today to really help flesh out our topic of discussion for the Total THC topic that we’ll be discussing today. So-

Chris Girard: Appreciate you guys having me. Thank you.

Mio Asami: Yeah, Chris, you want to kind of introduce yourself? I know Fabi just did a fabulous intro.

Chris Girard: She did, I don’t know what more I could say.

Mio Asami: Do you want to talk a little bit about what you do and why the people need to listen to you anyway?

Chris Girard: Oh, well, I don’t know if they need to, but I sure do like it when they listen. But-

Mio Asami: They should, they should.

Chris Girard: I Worked in cannabis compliance way back in Pelly Law days during the medical-

Mio Asami: He’s an OG, OG.

Chris Girard: Yeah, those good medical days when we could just say, “No, no, it’s a multiple collective garden” and all of a sudden plant count doesn’t matter, thanks to Pete Holmes and Dan Satterberg. But I learned a lot through regulation, and especially regulation of cannabis through that time. And then after I started a hemp company, went and cultivated my first 300 acres, had my own fun time with that. That’s a good first go around, spoken at a few different conventions across the United States, New York, Nevada, Oregon, California, and Kentucky, with DC coming this November, I think.

Mio Asami: So basically, you know your shit.

Chris Girard: I like to talk, and people like to listen now for some reason, but we’re there.

Fabiola Jimenez: Because that’s who we are.

Mio Asami: Before we get started though, do we want to talk about what the hell is going on in the world right now?

Fabiola Jimenez: Yo, fucking quarantine.

Mio Asami: Yeah, in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic, stay at home order madness, we are recording.

Chris Girard: Yes.

Fabiola Jimenez: Don’t worry, we’re six feet apart and Mio has a fucking face mask because she has a sore throat. [crosstalk 00:03:12].

Chris Girard: Got to be safe.

Fabiola Jimenez: We got to be safe, we got to be safe. It’s actually pretty nice to be back in this studio, aka our office. I’m seeing people other than my dog, which I love [Chapo 00:03:25], shout-out, follow him on Instagram, I’m just joking. Selfish plug. No, it’s actually really nice to be back in the office and see familiar faces. But with that, we want to be able to-

Mio Asami: We are staying safe.

Fabiola Jimenez: All right. And today, before I forget, our weekly word is decarboxylation.

Chris Girard: Decarboxylation.

Fabiola Jimenez: All right, that’s not how you pronounce it, but-

Mio Asami: Decarboxylation.

Chris Girard: There we go.

Mio Asami: There it is.

Fabiola Jimenez: Something about decarbing and because we’re in quarantine, that’s definitely not my situation right now. I probably should be because I’ve definitely gained the quarantine 25. Is that where we’re at?

Mio Asami: The COVID 20?

Fabiola Jimenez: Oh shit, the COVID 20? Is that where we’re at? Nah, I’m just joking. It’s incredibly unhealthy, don’t do that. Please exercise and-

Chris Girard: Be well.

Fabiola Jimenez: Be well.

Mio Asami: Please stay safe. Don’t be like me.

Fabiola Jimenez: Do shit and move around.

Chris Girard: Do shit.

Fabiola Jimenez: Do shit and move around. All right. So kind of kicking it off, we’re going to start with the USDA’s current situation and how they see Delta 9 and Total THC, kind of an overview of the rules. Chris, I know you’ve been dealing a lot with these types of questions coming your way. So to want to kick it off and discuss a little bit about the USD-

Chris Girard: What we’re seeing right now is more confusion than anything. A lot of States are differing to the federal guidelines of the 2014 farm bill. And a lot of States are changing their minds. Nevada has gone back and forth on whether they’re going to go with the 2014 Delta 9 testing and post-decarboxylation testing and how that all works for them. But I think that until November, whenever these rules are finalized, we’re going to see just a lot more of that. I don’t think we’re really going to see a whole lot of guidance from the USDA on this, unless our field goes hot, which at that point it would be more so from the local regulators than from the USDA themselves. So-

Mio Asami: So why November? You mentioned November 2020 being-

Chris Girard: So that’s whenever the initial 2014 farm bill-

Mio Asami: Expires.

Chris Girard: …expires. And so, yeah. It’s pretty much running full steam now.

Mio Asami: So I guess the way that they did that was so the previous farm bill expires when pass they new one. So the 2014 one really should have expired when the 2018 passed. But in the 2018 one, they kind of added a line in there that specifically said, if States are already operating their hemp program under the 2014, they can continue that until the end of the crop year of 2020, which is in November. So that’s why States that are still working under the 2014 one are still able to continue their program under the 2014 one until November of this year.

Chris Girard: And this is why it’s very important to make sure that you have an attorney that keeps up on things.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yeah.

Mio Asami: I want to stay on top of it because 2020 is looking like it’s going to be a hot year for hemp and what the actual standards are going to end up being.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yeah. I mean, I think it’s undeniable to see cannabis businesses being named essential businesses. So you can bet that things are going to be really looked at from a different perspective, from a closer perspective. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that cannabis is deemed essential, so right now. And also do want to point out with that, the USDA has had some kind of emergency interim rules that have come out as well. And it basically provides for a margin of error. Mio, we were talking about this earlier. [crosstalk 00:07:29]. Do you want to go ahead and-

Mio Asami: So the USDA has decided that instead of… So hemp used to just be… It was simple in its definition as hemp, if it’s cannabis with a THC level of less than 0.3%.

Chris Girard: Delta 9 was the biggest… Delta 9 THC was-

Mio Asami: Yes, exactly. And that’s… I mean, they didn’t even differentiate it back then though. Back then, it was just like THC, less than 0.3%, okay, that’s hemp. But now, because of the whole idea of calculating Total THC versus just Delta 9 THC, they’ve kind of differentiated and some States are starting to actually add that Delta 9 language into their statutes or whatever regulations that they have. So anyway, the USDA calculates, or needs to take into consideration Total THC, plus Delta 9 THC, which is the actual psychoactive ingredient. And then also THCA, which is a precursor to the Delta 9 THC. And what that means, basically, is that if THCA is hit with heat or light or anything like that, it’ll into THC. So it’s basically the potential amount that can turn into THC whenever you actually use this product or light it up, toke it up, whatever. Whatever you want to do with it.

Chris Girard: Whatever the kids are doing these days.

Mio Asami: Whatever the kids are doing these days, those youngins.

Fabiola Jimenez: Except for dabs, I’m very opposed to dabs.

Chris Girard: You don’t do the dabs? [crosstalk 00:09:20].

Fabiola Jimenez: No, I’m so afraid. [crosstalk 00:09:23]. I’m a purist.

Chris Girard: Oh yeah, yeah. Stick with just normal hash then. Normal hash, not what we have all of a sudden decided to create, is essentially just freebase THC.

Fabiola Jimenez: I was like, yeah, you know what, as soon as the blow torches come out, I was like, nope, getting out of this room. [crosstalk 00:09:42] I got to go, I got to go. I’m busy.

Chris Girard: [inaudible 00:09:44] line for a lot of people actually, that’s where the line is. It was like, whoa, torches, I’m out.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yeah, no. I fucking see a flaming hot little piece of metal, I’m like, nope, what is that?

Mio Asami: See when the spoons start coming out, I-

Chris Girard: Oh that’s funny.

Mio Asami: Okay. So anyway, so the USDA calculates Total THC, which is, as I said, Delta 9 plus THCA. And the way that the USDA needs the reports to be from the testing labs is that they need to take into consideration what they call MU, which stands for measurement of uncertainty. So for example, it’s kind of confusing, but I guess the example helps a little bit. So for example, if you give your hemp to a lab and that lab comes back and says that your THC level or Total THC is at 0.35%, you might think, oh shit, that’s more than, 0.3. All right, my hemp is testing hot. I can’t… This is not compliant, but that’s actually not the case. If the lab comes back with the test result and it says, 0.35 but it has a measurement of uncertainty of, for example, 0.06, then you have a distribution range of, 0.29 to 0.41. And because, 0.3 falls in between that distribution range, you’re hemp, even though it comes back with a Total TC of 0.35, it is still technically considered compliant under the USDA rules.

Chris Girard: Right, right. And this was sort of birthed out of, back in medical days as it converted over to recreational, we noticed a substantial difference between two different testing methods. We had never really been exposed to HPLC, most of it was gas chromatography. They heated it and they tested Delta 9. And that’s how all the crime labs did it, that’s how everybody got it. And so that’s all we knew. And now as evolutions of testing came and we were able to isolate things and test more specifically, in general we got more detailed. But then the issue with regulated cannabis and now also in hemp is the fact that the preparation of the sample material, to where countless studies have been done by Steep Hill, they’ve talked about it constantly. As you know, I talked with Integrity Labs a while back about it.

Chris Girard: It’s the issue of preparation. So if you grind up the material before you test it and you happen to agitate it at all, you’re going to stratify and the lighter vegetative material float to the top and the cannabinoids, all the trichomes will kind of move down to the bottom if they’ve been broken off. So if you scoop from the top or the bottom, you get different results that can be within 5%, I mean, crazy amounts. And so, and then whole flower can vary depending on where it’s taken. And so all of these different variables come in. And so all of these quantitative tests, especially when you’re talking about 0.3%, a third of 1% is a… I mean, maybe a non-scientific measurement, it’s probably a large amount, but for most that’s a pretty tight tolerance. And when labs are cranking samples through, and they’re not able to clean their machines properly, or have enough time to run enough sample tests as they have coming in, it’s a big issue that’s affected cannabis since day one and is now having a secondary effect on the hemp industry because we’re adopting some of the similar protocols.

Chris Girard: So it’s kind of nice to see them give us this variance to where it’s like, hey lab, just be honest with what your variance is and we’ll grade it in between. And also it removes a lot of liability from the labs. And if you remember first, they had DEA labs doing this testing, and there’s a massive liability on that, especially if they’re wrong and they burn your crop down and you got $10 million down the drain because they messed up. I mean, we’ve had fun like that before, and it didn’t work out too well for them. And they got sued for a lot. So it’s good to see that they have that in mind. And then of course, as we know, they move that over to approved labs as opposed to DEA controlled labs, which-

Mio Asami: As of February?

Chris Girard: Yes.

Fabiola Jimenez: As of February.

Chris Girard: Which is great, because there weren’t nearly enough DEA labs. There’s still not enough labs to test at all.

Fabiola Jimenez: Definitely not.

Mio Asami: Yeah, because some States have one for the entire state. So that’s just nearly impossible to send. And according to the rules, the sampling has to be done by the lab. It has to be lab personnel doing the sampling. So to send somebody from the lab to some farm way out in the boonies, somewhere in a different state where you’re… The lab was in like the Capitol or wherever the fuck a populated city is in your state. It’s just logistically, it would be-

Fabiola Jimenez: It’s a nightmare. Which is a nice segue into our second point with looking at Total THC on a state-by-state basis. I think we mentioned earlier, it is a difficult conversation to have because you have all these states adopting different rules and adopting different rules at different stages, as far as how they feel comfortable with their understanding of what is hemp, what is Delta 9 and Total THC. And so we’ve seen a trend where the states are looking obviously towards federal regulation, but they’re also looking internally and realizing, obviously Kentucky’s hemp regulations are going to be much more evolved than what you would say, Idaho, because Idaho sucks. [crosstalk 00:15:26]

Chris Girard: I used to not want to wear my hemp company t-shirt when I flew into Idaho. I got sketched out at TSA. I’m like, I don’t know guys, you guys are Idaho.

Fabiola Jimenez: You’re Idaho, exactly. And so-

Mio Asami: You the hoe. First states that have completely banned or still on the whole bandwagon of like, oh no-

Chris Girard: It’s the devil’s lettuce.

Mio Asami: Yeah, none of this please.

Fabiola Jimenez: But you know what, but black people still can’t walk on the left side of the farm.

Mio Asami: Oh, I’m sorry, I misspoke. Idaho is one of three States, so that’s even worse.

Chris Girard: Right.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yes, it’s fucking terrible.

Mio Asami: You the hoe.

Fabiola Jimenez: You the hoe. Mississippi’s another one, but not surprised. Okay. So where did it stop, on you the hoe?

Chris Girard: Yeah, yeah. I mean, it was, Idaho, I think, and then I hit record and we’ve been going, so we’re at the state-by-state.

Fabiola Jimenez: So we’re still state-by-state. All right, so Mio’s favorite word is you the hoe in this conversation.

Mio Asami: That’s my word of the week.

Fabiola Jimenez: And that’s her word. Don’t trademark it.

Chris Girard: Trademark.

Fabiola Jimenez: Trademark. So yeah, state-by-states, really… We’re not going to sit here and tell you every specific state that is this and that, because I mean, you got to pay us otherwise… I can give you that info, but you got return my services.

Mio Asami: No, I mean, in all honesty, it’s shorter to say there’s maybe… I think there’s five states that have implemented Total THC out of the 50 that we… It’s 50. We have 50 States.

Chris Girard: Yes, still.

Mio Asami: Yeah, we still have 50 States.

Fabiola Jimenez: One of us went to college.

Mio Asami: Yeah, it’s-

Fabiola Jimenez: One of us in the room went to college.

Mio Asami: I’m pretty sure it’s one… Yeah, there’s only five.

Chris Girard: Yeah, I think it’s five states that are sideways.

Mio Asami: Cleared it out? No, sorry, four. There’s only four that have kind of clearly stated that they were going to do Total THC. Everywhere else has either… The three that has completely banned it or they’ve made it clear that they’re only doing Delta 9 or they just haven’t really touched it yet. Which is again, just kind of adding to the whole idea that this situation can be a shit show, regulatory shit show.

Fabiola Jimenez: For sure. And the way that we break it down, when we’re talking to our clients and how we analyze the state-by-state is we actually talk with them and figure out where the product is coming from and where it’s going. And then we can start tracing those states, and that way we’re not spending hours upon hours, going into each regulatory scheme for every state, because it changes. This is what is really interesting about our industry and so different from any other industry is that it’s still being crafted. It’s still being formalized.

Mio Asami: It’s the Wild West out there.

Chris Girard: Oh, yeah.

Fabiola Jimenez: So when clients come to us and say, “I want to move hemp from A to B”, okay, we start looking at, where are you getting your hemp from? We got to make sure you’re set up and organized and in compliance with where you’re getting your hemp. And then we start tracking it. You’re going to move it from X state to Y state let’s… General direction. And then we create a sort of a dos and don’ts map of, this is okay if you traveled from here to here, this is not okay, don’t cross Idaho. It’s basically what it really [crosstalk 00:18:37].

Chris Girard: Go around, go around.

Fabiola Jimenez: And there’s a couple of other States that have regulatory language that States you need an extra permit just to even transport hemp. So it’s just a matter of getting together with your legal team. And it’s a swift process once we get the right details from what you’re trying to do. Again, it makes us a little bit different as a law firm, that our job is to make things happen for our clients. I mean, our clients know that there’s a lot of nos, but our job is to make sure that we provide them with the best legal advice so that they can do what they want within reason. And so, state-by-state regulation of hemp, it’s still ongoing, it’s ever changing. Definitely get legal advice on when you start transporting hemp and figuring out the best route to do that, to keep your product safe from confiscation, because sometimes we are able to get them out, sometimes we’re not, and that’s just the nature of the beast. And so we try to mitigate that as much as possible.

Chris Girard: Some of it is on the initial due diligence, making sure you’re doing it. I mean… And that even applies to selling consumer products, online state-to-state shipping. I mean, some States are a lot less friendly with that and they’ll treat it as if it’s a marijuana shipment, even though it’s not. And then you end up with a dissatisfied customer and that hurts your brand. And so, at minimum you can do damage to your brand. At most, your freedom.

Fabiola Jimenez: For sure. And you have realize too, certain shipping companies and carriers have their own rules for what they allow. So the US Postal Service versus FedEx versus UPS versus-

Chris Girard: I love the United States Postal Service. This is the first time I’ve ever been a big fan of them. [Crosstalk 00:20:23]. Because they will ship any- I remember we got a call that there was a guy that had just dumped in a bag full of hemp into a box and taped that box up. There was no internal liner, a forklift hit the box, split it open and dumped out a bunch of hemp flower on the ground and stunk up their whole place. They called, and they were in a hurry for us to go pick it up from distribution place because it was pretty bad. We walked in the door and it smelled like a dispensary. But they were cool about it though, they were still good about it.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yeah. And same thing, I’ve had had really good success with the US Postal Service. Same thing, a client’s CBD products were confiscated and it was a matter of making sure we had a good COA that we can provide. Then they… I mean, it took a little bit back and forth with me going with their counsel, but I was able to retrieve-

Chris Girard: And educate them a little.

Fabiola Jimenez: …and educate them a little. But I was able to get our client’s products back, which was super, super important and actually worth a lot of money. Anyways, so now that we’ve kind of hit the state of state, we’re going to hit our third point, which is science and practical application issues with regards to testing for Delta 9 and Total THC. [inaudible 00:21:36].

Chris Girard: Yeah, so I guess to start with that is, we had talked a little bit about standards of testing issues. The evidence that’s out there from Steep Hill Labs on preparations and protocols for samples and how that changes labs and tolerances. I mean, luckily the USDA allows that margin to be acquainted for in your test results. So you can’t blame it on the lab, essentially, or you don’t have anybody to blame but yourself, is kind of where they’re sort of trying to paint you into, I think. But that’s just my own personal opinion. So… But with that, protocols will adapt. I’m pretty sure there’s similar protocols whenever it comes to detecting certain things in hops, there’s certain testing protocols. We borrow a little bit from each industry that is existing to craft the one that’s in front of us.

Chris Girard: And that’s the way it’s been since day one. So I really think there needs to be a big push for an actual medical view at not only THC, which by the way, slight segue on this is, the whole purpose. And a hundred years ago, some guy wrote a book because the government wanted him to write a book about the difference of hemp and marijuana because they were already looking at outlawing it. And so they wanted to differentiate it. And the guy said, “Look, you paid me to do this. And that’s great, but differentiating these two plants solely based on a negligible amount of one of its constituents is completely against science and ridiculous. But if we’re going to pick a number, let’s pick this.” And that’s how we got .03. So if anybody wants to know where it came from, it’s an arbitrary number by somebody who really didn’t even want to do the study, but enjoy the government grant.

Mio Asami: Right.

Fabiola Jimenez: But you know what’s going to happen? We’re going to fucking come down a couple of years from now just like aliens. Just like the fucking government just came on video and fucking aliens the whole time.

Mio Asami: It’s a distraction. [crosstalk 00:23:32].

Fabiola Jimenez: They’re going to come down a few years from now and be like, so we’ve known that 0.3 is total bullshit.

Chris Girard: But we had to do something.

Fabiola Jimenez: So we had to do something. And so that’s just where we’re at. I’m a total conspiracy theorist on. So think of that as aliens and marijuana is like an alien right now. They’re hiding it, they’re not giving us the right information, they’re not allowing us to see really thoroughly what they have behind the scenes. And I think it’s because they’re afraid of what the backlash is going to be when they do reveal like, “Hey .03 is bullshit” and everyone’s going to be pissed.

Chris Girard: It’s arbitrary.

Fabiola Jimenez: But that’s just kind of where we’re at. That’s just where we’re at right now with this current situation. And we are hoping that as this industry matures, as more people and more scientists get involved and we can get some of that concrete evidence to be able to say X, Y, and Z is backed by actual science and not speculation, not by some randoms writer that was-

Chris Girard: Groups again, people getting high.

Fabiola Jimenez: Something like that.

Mio Asami: And I mean, as a practical matter, for farmers, anybody that’s actually growing out there, it might seem intimidating that some States… You might be in Oregon or you might be in a state that is accounting for Total THC versus just Delta 9. And so, because you now have that added factor of they’re calculating THCA, my hemp is more likely to test hot and it might be non-compliant, which it’s understandably scary, but I think it’s something that we’re just going to have to navigate through with the best of our abilities and hope for the best in the sense of hopefully-

Chris Girard: We got to roll with it. I mean [crosstalk 00:25:26].

Mio Asami: It’s an ever-changing thing right now. And that’s just part of the risk of being in an emerging industry is that you just… You’re navigating something that is uncharted territory, so sure.

Chris Girard: Yeah, I mean… And that’s actually a good point, is for farmers that are concerned about this. The biggest thing about testing is not necessarily whether it’s Delta 9 or THCA, the biggest directive that is in the interim rules that are coming into effect is that the tests are to be performed post-decarboxylation, which means that the sample has to be heated and converted. So then at least most, or all of the THCA can convert over into a Delta 9 for testing. This all opens up gas chromatography testing, things like that, which normally used, which are actually cheaper to operate as well. And so I think that might be in their mind is expanding testing. It’ll be cheaper to run a bunch of GCs then to develop all of this crazy equipment for UPLC or UHPLC and HPLC.

Chris Girard: So with that, all that means is that you take your THCA results, multiply it by 0.877 and that will give you your potential Delta 9 results. Sometimes other things like THCV will be a little bit higher and that will somehow complicate the Total THC test. And there’s always variables. All right. So yeah, we were talking about decarboxylation, which is just taking your THCA and multiplying it by 0.877, which will give you your total potential Delta 9. So that has to do with a lot of confusing stuff involving molecular weight changes and carbon atoms about really, what it comes down to it is, if you’re only able to get a HPLC test, you can factor your own total potential THC by doing that simple math. So hopefully that helps out some farmers and also helps people read tests a little bit better. THCA does matter now because we are going to start talking about decarbing and then testing. So that old thing of well it’s THCA, so it doesn’t count, doesn’t really apply anymore.

Fabiola Jimenez: So, I think we’ve heard a lot of information and it really kind of boils down to the government doesn’t know what the fuck they’re doing. So-

Chris Girard: Words.

Mio Asami: What’s new in this industry?

Fabiola Jimenez: What is new? So, I mean, team, what do you guys think? I mean, what are some proposed changes? What do you think would be some good changes moving forward? If we had a magic genie bottle and we can tell the government, “Hey, these are some things to consider to create a much more useful set of regulations”, what would you guys say?

Mio Asami: I mean, in all honesty, I think with anything… I mean, part of the issue when it comes to the United States and how we regulate things is federalism. We leave so many things up to the States and that’s a good thing to an extent, but when it comes to things like interstate commerce and hemp and things like that, it would help to have one standardized rule that we can all follow and that we would all be able to meet. That can all look to and just kind of know that that’s the standard.

Mio Asami: So, I mean, when it… Proposed change-wise, I would love for just that kind of-

Fabiola Jimenez: Consistency.

Mio Asami: …standardized consistency in how we regulate these things. I mean… And that goes obviously with cannabis or marijuana as well as just hemp, but yeah.

Fabiola Jimenez: What do you think, Chris?

Chris Girard: I mean, I think that it’s as simple as in the interim, leave it maybe on the farmers to where they don’t pop over 1% Total THC, and then maybe start looking at remediation techniques and regulations on processors to see because the biggest thing is diversion and de facto marijuana legalization. That’s what law enforcement’s concerned about in my opinion. And a lot of them scared of it. A lot of them are terrified that marijuana is suddenly going to become legal everywhere because we can’t tell the difference. Which was, I think has been their argument for 100, 90 years, for sure.

Fabiola Jimenez: [inaudible 00:29:55].

Chris Girard: And so I can’t tell the difference. Oh, well, so-

Mio Asami: That sounds like a you problem.

Chris Girard: That doesn’t sound like decades of prohibition to me.

Mio Asami: Doesn’t sound like a me problem.

Chris Girard: But… So I think that there’s going to be a big need to really just be realistic, stop being afraid of the THC monster, stop being afraid that kids are going to go run into traffic with scissors because of it and just raise it up to 1% for the farmer. So it keeps the farmer honest, it keeps the geneticist honest, and it keeps us breeding in a lineage to where we can just have hemp without these worries. Then let the processors deal with how much the end product contains, how much the wholesale product contains and the oils or whatever extraction they’re making and remediation techniques to get that THC out and protocols for what to do. You can either carry it over into CBN and sell that separately here in America, or you can destroy it, which I have a few great ways to destroy large amounts of THC. Most of them involve a lighter.

Chris Girard: But yeah, I mean, I really think that we just need to get some common sense point like that while we do research and we figure it out. I mean, everybody’s afraid of this THC boogeyman and it’s… Most hemp farmers don’t want to be pot farmers. I’ve talked to them across the countries. None of them want to be pot farmers. They never have grown pot. They just see a means for them to make money better than subsidies. And really that’s all they’re going for is a new livelihood. Some people got some pie in the sky ideas and all that, but for the most part, it’s just honest farmers trying to be able to pay down the bank loans, be able to maybe make it ahead once in generations. That’s what they care about. They don’t care about growing pot. So the government needs to understand that. It needs to really talk to farmers and really work with farmers and develop something that’s more rational and science-based than punitive-based. We kind of know-

Mio Asami: And, I agree that you brought up a really good point about remediation and how that should be something that regulations consider and-

Chris Girard: They’re starting to talk about it.

Mio Asami: And they are. And it’s nice that they are because a lot of the regulations just kind of lay out, like this is the standard for what is considered hemp, and if it tests hot, then it tests hot and that’s not compliant. And they don’t really follow up with, well, what happens if it does test hot? Not many people know what to do if it does. And some places don’t even go that far as to even specifically say like, “Oh, you have these three options or you have… This is what the regulatory body is going to do.” So I mean, it would help to allow just kind of a standardized… No, if it tests hot, then you can remediate. If it’s a concentrate, you can remediate it. Let’s do this. That’s going to be okay, and then we’ll make it compliant, and then it’ll be fine. It’s this whole testing… Like you said, the THC monster, the testing monster, it shouldn’t be such a monster, I think. And it’s just in the future-

Chris Girard: They need to be worried about pesticides more than THC.

Mio Asami: Right, right, right. I don’t want to be smoking rat poison in my body. You know what I mean? I used to smoke cigarettes, so yes I did used to smoke rat poison, but-

Speaker 5: Super judgy [inaudible 00:33:16].

Mio Asami: Yeah. Side note, I did smoke rat poison. But-

Chris Girard: It was socially acceptable rat poison.

Mio Asami: It was socially acceptable rat poison, yes it was. It was a… And I don’t suggest it at all.

Fabiola Jimenez: Smoke weed instead, said someone in the audience.

Mio Asami: Smoke weed everyday.

Fabiola Jimenez: [inaudible 00:33:38].

Mio Asami: But yeah, I think it will be something that helps get rid of the THC monster is to allow a remediation process and to standardize that and make… And kind of give assurance to people that even if it tests hot, you didn’t completely destroy your fucking crop.

Chris Girard: Right. And, yeah, it’s wild to think that a farmer could grow crop and by no fault of his own lose it all.

Mio Asami: Right, right.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yeah, I mean-

Chris Girard: I mean, that blows my mind.

Mio Asami: It’s crazy, right.

Chris Girard: I mean, other than Mother Nature, but the farmer… Those families have to deal with hurricanes in some areas, especially down south, they have to deal with crazy stuff, bugs-

Fabiola Jimenez: Fucking tornadoes.

Chris Girard: …droughts, tornadoes. I mean, I saw some crazy stuff growing hemp.

Fabiola Jimenez: And it happens all in one day too.

Chris Girard: All in one day. In some areas, yes. It’s wild to see that. And then you throw on this arbitrary thing of like, hey, if your crop happens to test over this random number that we’re not even sure what we’re doing, you could lose it all. That’s terrifying. That is going to de-incentivize hemp farming. Absolutely. And speaking of incentivizing, whenever we talk about things like setting up things to do with that THC, we want to make sure not to incentivize people to grow massive anchorages of non-compliant hemp just to serve the THC market. Down in Nevada, there was a big talk about allowing you to sell hot product into the recreational system. And myself, a couple other people, and the actual Department of Taxation down there had a situation where they were like, “We don’t want any part of this because this is just going to incentivize people to grow mega acres.”

Mio Asami: Right. You’re basically allowing unlicensed farmers to grow weed.

Chris Girard: And coming from a tax department, they do like that tax money. And so they’re incentivized to get more stuff into their system to collect more taxes.

Mio Asami: Yes, they want to regulate.

Chris Girard: I mean, so it’s, I don’t know, it’s far from perfect, but get a lawyer.

Mio Asami: So yeah, standardization.

Fabiola Jimenez: I think the message of this episode is get a fucking lawyer because sometimes we know what we’re doing, and sometimes we really know what we’re doing.

Mio Asami: And most of the time we will figure it out with you.

Fabiola Jimenez: For sure. We didn’t pick a strain for this.

Chris Girard: We didn’t. We didn’t pick one. So let’s just think of what’s-

Fabiola Jimenez: We just have a [inaudible 00:36:20] choice, maybe a hemp cultivar.

Chris Girard: Oh, I like that. Well then let’s talk about some of the new hemp cultivars that are coming out. One of the new ones is Matterhorn from HGH Seeds. It is a high CBG cultivar. I don’t work for them at all, by the way.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yeah, so today-

Mio Asami: Disclaimer.

Fabiola Jimenez: Disclaimer.

Mio Asami: Not sponsored.

Fabiola Jimenez: #Notsponsored.

Mio Asami: No affiliates. Disclaimer, this is not legal advice. Chris is not a lawyer. He knows his shit, but he’s not a lawyer.

Chris Girard: That’s one thing I’m not as a lawyer. But yeah, I think the white is a phenomenal hemp cultivar specifically because it’s allowed a lot of reassurances with farmers and to the user, to where it is a CBG cultivar, which is cannabigerol, which is a different… It’s actually the precursor to either THC or CBD. All they did was flip a switch so it doesn’t turn into THC. So you end up with very, very compliant 0.1 Total THC levels on average from what’s out on the interwebs, at least. And then… But high teens of CBG. And so these are actually being used surprisingly enough with the current times in creating a antiviral antibacterial. It’s actually going through some interesting trials right now to fight MRSA and things like that. So expansion of hemp cannabinoids, you never know. So sure, let’s pick that one, it’s hemp and it’s progressive.

Mio Asami: And as always, if you want to learn more about that, it’ll be on our Instagram page, @cultivatingconversations. I think that’s our handle. Hold on, let’s check. Pause for-

Fabiola Jimenez: Pause for a few minutes.

Mio Asami: Yeah, let’s check-

Fabiola Jimenez: @cultivatingconvos420 is our Instagram.

Mio Asami: Okay. So as always, if you want to learn more about that strain, you can go to our Instagram page, we will have more information. Our Instagram handle is at @cultivatingconvos420.

Fabiola Jimenez: You can follow me.

Mio Asami: It’s four, two, zero.

Fabiola Jimenez: Four, two, zero. You can follow me @fabiacultiva. You can follow Mio-

Mio Asami: @miocultiva.

Fabiola Jimenez: @miocultiva. Definitely, you can find us on LinkedIn. Actually, Chris’ LinkedIn is pretty awesome. He has a lot of information. So you guys can look him up and follow him for some really good information as well. All right, squad, thanks so much for tuning in. Hope you guys enjoyed our four points on-

Mio Asami: Stay safe, stay healthy.

Fabiola Jimenez: Yes. Please don’t spread COVID.

Chris Girard: Yeah don’t do it. Thanks for having me guys. [crosstalk 00:38:55]. Bye.

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