The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) plans to allow 3,200,000 grams of cannabis to be cultivated for research in 2020, a 30% increase over the 2019 quota.

The DEA had initially proposed production estimates for 2020 in a notice published in September in the Federal Register. The latter announcement puts the finishing touches on these figures. After taking into account comments received during a public consultation period. Which gathered hundreds of submissions from health professionals, government officials, the federal government and the general public.

The DEA stated that the quotas reflected the “estimated medical, scientific, research and industrial needs of the United States, in terms of legal export requirements, as well as the establishment and maintenance of reserve stocks”. The demand for cannabis for research purposes has increased rapidly as more and more states have decided to legalize medical cannabis.

In its initial opinion, the DEA stated that the number of people registered with the agency to research cannabis, its extracts and derivatives and THC “increased by more than 40%, from 384 in January 2017 to 542 in January 2019.

However, while the cannabis production quota and the number of registered researchers has steadily increased, there is still only one federally authorized cannabis crop grown within the University of Mississippi. Despite numerous requests from companies wishing to grow crops for the federal government. However, DEA never responded, raising suspicions of a lack of orchestrated will.

Cannabis challenges

A complaint filed , but , the Federal Court dismissing it, holding that DEA was taking appropriate measures to produce the suitable quantities .

Besides, the other problem researchers and legislators clear cut is that current federal cannabis production does not reflect the products available on the commercial market. It often contains much lower THC concentrations, along with other equally under-represented cannabinoids, raising questions about the validity of studies based on government-provided cannabis.

A study found that federally manufactured cannabis is chemically closer to hemp than cannabis available in the various markets.

The final production quota of 3200 kilograms does not specify the types of cannabis that should be grown. Therefore, the University of Mississippi facility manager said earlier this year that he did not understand why people would want cannabis containing more than 8% THC, even though the commercially available products exceed that percentage.

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