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Madison County hosts Hemp and CBD awareness conference


Hemp and CBD are exploding in popularity, but you may wonder: exactly what are they, and are they different than marijuana? Also, what is legal in Tennessee and what is not? The madison county sheriff’s office hoped to answer those kinds of questions today at an awareness conference for law enforcement, that include a tour of a hemp farm.

“The two are for the most part cousins, to use an understandable term. The primary difference has to do with THC content of the actual product of the plant itself,” says Rick Brooks Director of Training at the Madison County Sheriff's office.

The sheriff’s department hosted a hemp & CBD awareness conference today so that law enforcement officers from across the state could learn more about the plants. Members of the state department of agriculture, the Tennessee bureau of investigation and hemp farmers were all there to talk about hemp and CBD in Tennessee.

Rick Brooks with the sheriff's office stresses why it's important for law enforcement to know the differences between CBD and marijuana,

There seems to be a growing body of scientific evidence that demonstrates a lot of benefits that come from hemp and CBD produces …but when you take two plants that are very different but look very similar it can also create challenges for law enforcement, so we need to increase our understanding to determine what is legal and what is not legal.”

Hemp is legal as long as it meets the regulations set by the state of Tennessee. Marijuana has THC that causes people to get high, while hemp does not.

Madison county hemp growers Patrick Nelson and Sam Davis grow started growing for a very personal reason,

“a lot of it started with my sister-in-law and Patrick's sister was diagnosed with ovarian cancer four years ago. We tried a lot of different things when we were going through our healing process and one of the things that we tried was CBD products and we saw how much that worked for her," says Sam Davis.

Hemp Hill Pharm was created as a family business three years ago. Their process begins by growing the seeds inside then after a period of time they move the plants to the fields. Later they are picked, dried and the CBD oil is extracted from the bud of the plant. Then the oil is used to create products to sell. These products include CBD pills, CBD oil, roll-on CBD, gummies and even produces for pets.

Sam Davis says that the products have health benefits, “natural medicines have always been something that intrigued me, you know this is one of the biggest and the best our there. You know with his background in agriculture and my background in pharmacy it just really naturally meshed together.”

Although they successfully grow hemp and create products, they say they never would have imaged that they would be hemp farmers, “I never saw myself, if five years ago you had said that i was going to have a field of cannabis. I don’t think I would have seen myself doing this five years ago,” says Patrick Nelson.

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