The southern state is not immune to the CBD boom, as the state continues to see an explosive rise in the number of farmers raising CBD, and citizens using it.
In 2019 alone, 3,800 licenses were issued to grow hemp in the state, adding up to a total of 51,000 acres that were approved to grow the plant this year. In 2018, for comparison, there were only 226 licenses issued.
While 2014 brought life to the pilot program to start studying the plant and how to grow it, 2018 opened the doors to mass production.
“It’s been decades and decades and decades since anybody was able to grow this plant, and the biggest purpose was for farmers, research institutions, universities or interested growers to be able to produce this crop and learn how to do it,” TDA spokesperson William Freeman told the press.
The TDA is still encouraging farmers to continue as normal with the release of the USDA temporary guidelines in October. Officials are currently reviewing the program to see how the USDA’s rules will affect it.
As the plant meets more mainstream adoption, CBD store owners are seeing more and more people walk in who were recommended by their doctors. Doctors are starting to advise their patients to experiment with CBD if they have symptoms that could be helped by the drug.
“We recently had a customer in the store who knew something was wrong and was trying to figure it out with her pulmonary doctor, who recommended she consider seeking out high-quality CBD until they could pinpoint what was wrong,” Lainley Maples, owner of CBD store Native Plant said.
Tennessee lawmakers weigh in on the subject too. They approved a 12-member task force to study the issues surrounding hemp before the next legislative session starts next year. They have expressed concern in making it more clear to consumers what they are getting and to help make the process more transparent.