TULSA, Okla. - Four people were arrested recently in Osage County on accusations of trafficking marijuana, but they claim it was a shipment of hemp. FOX23’s Rick Maranon sought to find out the difference between the two.
Chip Paul, an author of State Question 788 that legalized medical marijuana in Oklahoma and the president of Oklahomans for Health, said hemp and marijuana are both cannabis plants and the difference is the level of THC, the chemical compound that produces a high, in each.
Federal government regulations define hemp as having 0.3 percent THC. Marijuana naturally produces a higher level of THC.
Hemp is grown mainly for industrial purposes and had its governing laws loosened recently by the federal government so more people could transport, work with and access it. Most notably, it is used in the making of cannabidiol, or CBD, oil.
Marijuana is still heavily restricted, if not outright illegal, depending on which jurisdiction you are in.
Osage County District Attorney Mike Fischer told FOX23 the alleged hemp confiscated in Pawhuska last week had clear signs under a microscope that it was in fact marijuana. He described hemp as the male version of the plant and marijuana as the female version.
"There were clear male and female differences we could see, and what I saw was clearly what for this story could be classified as female," Fischer said.
- Woman banned from Walmart after riding cart while drinking wine from Pringles can
- Sign up for free FOX23 Newsletters
- Super wolf blood moon: A viewing guide for the coolest sounding lunar eclipse
- FOLLOW FOX23 on Facebook for updates in your news feed
- Netflix raising prices for 58M US subscribers as costs rise
- DOWNLOAD the FOX23 News app for updates sent to your phone.
© 2019 Cox Media Group.