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South Dakota Legislature Passes Bill to Ban Some Hemp-Derived Products 

The South Dakota House of Representatives voted almost unanimously to accept  Senate changes to an act to prohibit the chemical modification of industrial hemp. These changes to HB 11125 were concurred to on Feb. 29.

The bill would ban Delta-8, Delta-9, and THC-O products that were made legal by the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, colloquially known as the Farm Bill, signed into law in 2018.

Rep. Brian Mulder (R-Sioux Falls) introduced the bill because Delta-8, Delta-9, and other modified industrial hemp products are not regulated by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA).  

Mulder said the language of this bill came after various conversations with state agencies, such as the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources and the Department of Health. 

HB1125 modifies existing law, introducing the term “chemically derived cannabinoid” in Section 1. 

“In 2023, the DEA put a statement out saying THC-O should be a regulated substance. We need to clarify this in our state,” Mulder said. 

Mulder argued the bill’s intent is not to harm the hemp industry, but to regulate synthesized products on the market. 

Brian “Donald” McDonald, the general manager for Flamez Tobacco & Vapor in Vermillion, South Dakota, said he is concerned the bill would move the market away from the hemp industry to the hands of the black market. 

“The implications for making this illegal, there is a reality that when you criminalize a product, you put the product into the hands of criminals,” McDonald said. 

He argued people that choose to use the product will continue to seek the product. Donald is concerned those seeking the products rely on hemp-based THC as an alternative to prescribed opioids.  

“The people I’m concerned about are the elderly folk that come in. For example, just yesterday, we had a gal in the shop that uses 5 mg delta gummies. She came in and told us she was able to sleep through the night for the first time in years,” McDonald said. 

The bill now sits on Gov. Noem’s desk awaiting her signature. If she chooses to sign the bill, the bill will become law and go into effect this July. During session, the governor has five calendar days to sign or veto a bill. If no action is taken, bills become law automatically.