Cannabis legislation has long been characterized by a patchwork of laws in the United States, with some states allowing only medical, and others permitting unbridled recreational use. Hemp may soon be the first real beacon of light from a federal perspective, as the 2018 Farm Bill would allow the plant to be grown, and its organic components processed for commercial, medical and industrial purposes. Chris Brunin is one of the many advocates hoping, wishing and waiting for that day. We caught up with Brunin, the CEO of Quiet Trees, to discuss the prospectsfor hemp if the Farm Bill is passed, the mandate of his company, and the importance of education in the space. The following is an edited transcript of that conversation.
What are your aspirations for industrial hemp?
The sky’s the limit. Once the 2018 Farm Bill is signed it’s supposed to fully legitimize industrial hemp in the United States, which has been the issue, because we have a couple states that are completely wide open and most are limited to research. With us all getting on the same page, there will be a wide variety of products that we can get into. Right now, CBD is the main money maker for industrial hemp farmers, but I think the grain and the fibre aspect of the plant have huge potential, and that’s probably where we’ll see the most growth.
Is it gratifying knowing that federal reform on the hemp side of the equation may finally be on the horizon?
It’s been a steady uphill walk for us. Every month seems to get a little bit crazier. It’s legal here in Kansas, but we have to have 0.00 percent THC. The federal law is .03, so it’s a little more restricted for us, but once it’s fully lined up and we can get into the full spectrum of things, it’s going to be very promising. There has already been some great results and we get a lot of positive feedback from the products that we do offer now.
Quiet Trees sells live resin, oil tinctures, pre-loaded vape tips and CBD tea. What couldthat product line look like if the Farm Bill is passed?
We always want to move forward and expand; it’s never finished with us. We just got some bath bombs that we made locally here: 90 milligrams, all-natural, Vitamin E and hemp-seed oil. We’re also getting ready to do a health supplement with prebiotic, probiotic and different minerals. I also like what some companies are doing with the pain patches, the CBD patches, and I’d like to dive into that at some point. The other thing is, once state laws change, I’d like to sell raw CBD flower to people. That would be big for us.
What’s you company’s core mandate?
We’re trying to provide high-quality CBD products at affordable rates, and really do what we say we’re going to do. There’s a lot of misinformation in this industry and a lot of really shady companies. It’s like any boom – you’re going to have ups and downs in that regard, but we try to be very transparent with third-party lab results, and the manufacturing process that we employ. We’re trying to educate people, get them healthy, and not take all their money in the process.
How important is education in the hemp space?
Last that I heard, around five percent of people know what CBD is. I thought most people knew about it, but that’s obviously not the case. I really think [passing the Farm Bill] will allow smaller companies to get out there and educate people and get everyone on the same page, so that we can try to work together. One of the big things that I’ve done here locally in Kansas is try to go around and talk about CBD, the benefits of it, and what it can help you with.
How do you see hemp evolving in coming years?
I’d like to see a lot of farmers switching from monocrops like corn and soybeans to industrial hemp. I think it could take off, especially here in Kansas. It usually takes one farmer to do it, but once he has his brand-new truck and his new building and a new shiny watch or something, the other farms start to want new trucks. I’m hoping that, as these things change, so too will our consciousness and awareness of how powerful this plant truly is, and how it can help our communities.
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