HeMP (CBD), MARIJUANA (THC), CANNABIS and MEDICAL MARIJUANA – WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?
While marijuana plants contain high levels of THC, hemp contains very little of the psychoactive chemical. This single difference is what most rely on to distinguish hemp from marijuana. For example, countries like Canada have set the maximum THC content of hemp at 0.3%. Any cannabis with higher THC levels is considered marijuana. Medical marijuana produces anywhere between 5-20% THC on average.
Hemp and marijuana plants contain another important cannabinoid: CBD. Hemp plants produce more CBD than THC, while marijuana produces more THC than CBD.
Hemp and marijuana are grown for different uses, and therefore require different growing conditions. Achieving maximum THC levels in marijuana is tricky and requires close attention to grow-room conditions. On the other hand, hemp is usually grown outdoors to maximize its size and yield and less attention is paid to individual plants.
In South Africa, Hemp is legal to grow under licence but Marijuana is not. Hemp supplement suppliers are legal and operate on the internet (like Elixinol.co.za).
There is a group of cannabis strains collectively called Medical Cannabis. And that’s where the confusion comes in.
Because cannabis is under the radar, the information about it is often contradictory, hazy, word-of-mouth, and one must rely on the internet.
There have been many changes in the illegal world of cannabis oil for the sick worldwide. Behind the scenes in S.A. there are groups working towards legalisation too.
In the meantime there is a list of “approved” suppliers. The “approved suppliers” methods have apparently been inspected to ensure that their bottles/containers show the % of cannabinoids and that the labels contain batch numbers. Those requirements all add to the cost of the product of course, but on the other hand the customer is assured of a quality product.
I have been told that one has to have the oil specially made for your type of illness. Oil for stress may be quite different to that of lung cancer. I’ve been told to take majority CBD with a tinge of THC. (The THC is wonderful before bed for sleeping.) I have been buying from different suppliers as Medical Cannabis costs much more than Hemp.