The Politics of Cannabis - What the Marijuana Industry May Be Scared Of

| in News |

All industries are latent with politics.  The agriculture, food, and medicine industries, along with the associated policies and government agencies, are no different.


It's important to be aware of the competing interests.  And it is also important to speak up.  At That's Natural, we aren't afraid of being honest.  We want to ensure that people have access to the foods and medicines of their choice - and that means that we can't be afraid of 'saying it like it is'.


Cannabis - a plant with many different strains and types - includes both what is referred to as  "hemp" and "marijuana".  Hemp and marijuana are both "types" of cannabis, but hemp and marijuana (as it is referred to) are not the same thing.  Cannabis (an annual, flowering herb) can be bred to include more or less of certain compounds - including the cannabinoids THC and CBD.  Just like scientists and farmers can breed corn to have different levels of sugar, cannabis plants can have have been bred to provide different compounds.  


Cannabis has three different defined species, including: Cannabis saliva, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis.  Although these are the three large varieties that are referred to as "species" - there is much debate over additional types of species because of the actual universally accepted definition of "species" (there isn't one), as well as for the diversity of drug and non-drug, cultivated/farmed and wild types of Cannabis.


Cannabis plants are unique in that they produce large amounts of "cannabinoids", which are a unique family of terpeno-phenolic compounds.  At least 85 different cannabinoids have been isolated - two of those that are isolated that are garnering the most attention are THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol).  But these are just two - there are at least 83 additional cannabinoids that have not been studied as much, but may hold more promise for human and animal health (humans have an "Endcannabinoid System" that is now being researched for its role in the body's many functions.


The truth is, that THC, and the psychoactive component of Cannabis, is just one part of a much larger, broader picture.  Cannabidiol (CBD) and other cannabinoids, are not all psychoactive (they do not give the user a "high"), but they can still bind with our Endocannabinoid System to produce positive benefits for our health and wellness.


Marijuana legalization is a big deal, and important for medicine freedom, but marijuana and users of THC are not the only players in the game of health.  Regular hemp, sometimes misleadingly called "industrial hemp" (which invokes the feelings that it is for industry and not for human health), and CBD are also important players.  And we want to make sure you know about it and understand it.  And that you understand that people specifically in the 'marijuana', 'you-have-to-get-high' camp, may not believe in the many applications of the whole Cannabis plant, like we do.


Medicine freedom goes far beyond people's right to use THC and marijuana. Medicine freedom includes people's rights to take supplements and herbs that are not psychoactive.  Medicine freedom includes people's right to consume raw or unpasteurized milk.  Medicine freedom is big - and the marijuana industry may be starting to feel some pressure to be honest about THC and the fact that they aren't the only game in town.  No doubt that THC is incredibly important and of huge benefit to people - but there is more to the Cannabis plant than just THC.  And for the sake of all of the people who could benefit from all of the information and all of the different cannabinoids (like CBD) - let's remind ourselves that Cannabis is big, and bigger than just the THC and the "high" that is brought by this particular compound.