by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director July 26, 2019

Marijuana FieldFederal officials have approved plans for the University of Mississippi to grow 2,000 kilograms (4,409 pounds) of cannabis to provide to investigators for clinical trial research. Since 1968, the University of Mississippi farm, which is governed by the US National Institute on Drug Abuse, has held the only available federal license to legally cultivate cannabis for FDA-approved research in the United States.

According to reporting by the Associated Press, marijuana crops will include plants of varying THC and CBD potencies, including strains high in cannabidiol. As per the program’s current marijuana menu, no available samples contain more than seven percent THC and all samples contain less than one percent CBD.

Clinicians wishing to conduct FDA-approved clinical trials on cannabis have long complained that federally-provided samples are of inferior quality. A research analysis published earlier this year reported that strains currently available from NIDA shared genetics typically associated with industrial hemp, not commercially available cannabis.

The crop will be the largest grown by the University of Mississippi in several years.