On December 20, 2018, President Trump signed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, also known as the “2018 Farm Bill,” which legalized industrial hemp under federal law by removing it from the definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substance Act. As a result, the agricultural industry nationwide is turning its focus from more traditional crops to the cultivation, growing and manufacturing of hemp and hemp-based products. It is believed that hemp can be used to manufacture more than 25,000 different products spanning numerous markets including textiles, recycling, automotive, furniture, food and beverages, paper, construction materials, and personal care. Many have said that the legalization of industrial hemp will be a “game-changer” for the agricultural industry.
As a national law firm with more than 500 attorneys practicing in offices throughout the U.S., Kutak Rock is well-positioned to provide advice and represent those looking to take advantage of the newly legalized hemp industry. Not only do we possess a wide array of experience as a national law firm, but we have attorneys in several offices who already have experience working with clients in the pre-legalization hemp industry, and attorneys with experience representing clients in other industries similar to the hemp industry. With attorneys licensed to practice in almost every state that has (or is contemplating) passed legislation legalizing hemp (and with offices in many of those states), we are well-equipped to provide legal services necessary to clients operating in the hemp industry.
In 2014, President Obama signed the Agricultural Act of 2014 (the “2014 Farm Bill”), pursuant to which the federal government allowed state-sponsored universities and state departments to grow and cultivate hemp under limited circumstances. Since 2014, numerous states enacted their own industrial hemp programs pursuant to the 2014 Farm Bill. Today, many of these states continue to operate under their 2014 Farm Bill hemp programs and will be modifying their programs to comply with the mandates of the 2018 Farm Bill. Kutak Rock has offices in several states where hemp was legalized under the 2014 Farm Bill:
We are experienced in advising and representing clients in a wide array of services to clients operating in the hemp industry:
- Business formation and structure
- Environmental compliance
- Corporate compliance
- Regulatory compliance
- Intellectual property
- Complex financing arrangements
- Government affairs
- Land use and real estate
- Financial services
- Mergers and acquisitions