The Differences Between Hemp vs. Marijuana

Hemp and marijuana are both Cannabis plants, yet they have unique features. We’ll go through the anatomy, history, use, and legality of hemp to discover not just what distinguishes hemp from marijuana but also why it’s such a valuable and versatile commodity.

The use of cannabidiol, or CBD, has become increasingly popular in recent years. It has attracted a great deal of interest in both the health and legal industries, despite many states yet to decide where they stand on this intriguing plant.

Hemp and cannabis are relatives, yet many people are unaware of it. Despite their frequent confusion, the two plants have distinct differences.

We’ll look at the differences between these two cannabis species to see what makes them so distinct.

What Is Hemp?

Hemp has recently risen in popularity, in part due to the growing popularity of CBD. Hemp was long linked with marijuana, which is why it was prohibited. Due to the 2018 Farm Bill’s decriminalization of hemp, it may now be cultivated and harvested in the United States.

Hemp was formerly cultivated in the United States and was historically grown there in significant quantities. George Washington encouraged farmers to grow hemp as a money crop, which they used to make cloth. He regularly kept track of his hemp harvests in his diary. Before the Civil War, hemp production made up a substantial portion of the US economy, supplying raw products (including food, medicine, and textiles) for many industries.

Hemp and marijuana are two different varieties of plants with unique chemical compositions. Hemp, unlike marijuana, has a relatively low amount of THC, which causes the psychotropic effects of marijuana. As a result, hemp does not cause cognitive impairment. It can also provide nutritional value and is used to make a range of therapeutic goods owing to its high CBD content.

What Is Marijuana?

Marijuana is most recognized as a recreational drug. It has a high amount of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), making it ideal for producing an intoxicating effect.

Marijuana is available in a variety of forms and hundreds of distinct strains, each with its own scent, flavor, and effect. Decades of crossbreeding have resulted in the creation of unique, one-of-a-kind hybrids as a result of crossbreeding.

The majority of American states now allow medical marijuana, suggesting that the plant has a number of therapeutic advantages.

Why are hemp and marijuana different?

Despite the fact that most botanists refer to all cannabis plants as belonging to the same species, they have frequently been divided into two categories: Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica.

Indica and sativa are two names that have been used to refer to marijuana strains for a long time. This difference is frequently made use of to identify distinct marijuana strains because it has long served as a basis for describing them. A sativa was defined as cannabis that was more lively or encouraging, whereas an indica was defined as weed that was more relaxing or sedative. Furthermore, the appearance of these two types were described differently.

Despite the fact that this categorization’s popularity continues to grow today, it has been debunked by experts. It is not the labeling indica or sativa on the plant that affects you and determines how it affects you, but rather the chemical composition of a strain.

Surprisingly, a research comparing the genetic profiles of 43 hemp samples and 81 marijuana samples found that hemp is genetically closer to C. indica than marijuana is to C. sativa. Hemp is more closely related genetically to C. indica than marijuana is to C. sativa.

Cannabis, on the other hand, is far less hazardous than many of the other items on the market today. According to this research, marijuana and hemp still have a “large pool of genetic diversity.” Cannabis strains can be more genetically similar to hemp or vice versa. The perplexing genetic mix is the result of millennia of human migration with cannabis seeds and planned crossbreeding.

Is the hemp vs marijuana distinction useful?

It’s now time to look at hemp and see whether it works for clients, especially since you know the distinction between hemp and marijuana. Let’s start by going over the fundamental distinctions between popular cannabis products.

Cannabis oil vs hemp oil vs CBD oil

Hemp oil is the only CBD oil used in the production of marijuana stores’ goods. This chemical, also known as hemp oil, CBD oil, or CBD hemp oil, is derived from the hemp plant.

Hemp plants that contain additional phytonutrients, such as up to 0.3 percent THC, in addition to CBD, are used to make full spectrum CBD oils. Broad spectrum CBD oil is produced by extracting other phytonutrients from the plant but removing all THC. Finally, CBD isolates are preparations consisting entirely of CBD with no additional components such as terpenes or cannabinoids.

Cannabis oil is a kind of cannabis-derived oil that has been extracted from the marijuana plant. Hemp oil is pure, whereas hemp seed oil and hemp seed butter are not. Hemp oils sometimes include THC and other healthful plant compounds. CBD oil may be produced from marijuana because it too might contain CBD, although most CBD-rich oils extracted from marijuana are called cannabis oil or marijuana oil to avoid confusion.

Can you smoke hemp?

Hemp can make you euphoric, while cannabis has intoxicating components. Hemp plants, on the other hand, have tiny amounts of psychoactive substances. THC isn’t produced in enough quantities in hemp plants to intoxicate people. Despite being a psychotropic cannabinoid in technical terms, CBD is non-intoxicating and does not produce its own euphoric high.

Smoking organic hemp may be a pleasant and efficient approach to discover different cannabinoids, such as CBD, whether you want to get high or not. Now that you can buy certified organic hemp flowers and pre-rolls from all around the world, experimenting has never been easier. Despite the fact that hemp-derived CBD gummies and CBD oil are becoming more popular today, smoking hemp allows you to self-titrate in real time, so there’s no need for any particular effects to appear.

There are several advantages to smoking CBD rather than eating or using it via a tincture under your tongue, including greater bioavailability and additional benefits. When you smoke CBD instead of eating or administering it with a tincture under your tongue, its bioavailability increases significantly. The amount of CBD in the smoke or vapor is greater when breathed in. When an edible containing CBD passes through the digestive system, some of its strength is lost due to digestive processes.

If you want a cleaner burn, consider using a hemp wick rather than a lighter or match to light your hemp flower. Raw hemp wick coated in beeswax creates an all-natural slow-burning product that many people claim provides superior taste and aroma compared to those produced by gasoline or electricity. There’s plenty more for you to learn.

How are hemp varieties chosen?

Hemp cultivars are selected based on numerous criteria, including:

  • Stem quality
  • Cannabinoid content
  • Resistance to disease
  • Time to harvest
  • Hemp oil content
  • Seed production per acre

Cannabis producers are turning to hemp in order to produce CBD now that a greater understanding of cannabinoids and their numerous advantages has emerged. In recent years, CBD production has grown in importance. As the CBD market develops, additional cultivars are chosen based on their CBD yields and distinct aromatic terpene profiles.

Hemp vs. marijuana: Does hemp also have THC?

Hemp, unlike cannabis, is a plant that does not include any THC and instead includes many cannabinoids. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the mind-altering cannabinoid present in marijuana, is one of them. Unlike cannabis, hemp does not contain enough THC to make you high.

Hemp, unlike marijuana, only produces a very small quantity of THC, although it is able to create a great deal of non-intoxicating cannabidiol (CBD) through the conversion process. Hemp-derived CBD is quickly becoming one of the most popular cannabinoids on the market today.

THC is the primary psychoactive component in marijuana. Cannabis plants with a THC concentration under 0.3 percent are classified as industrial hemp in the United States. The European Union limit is 0.2%, although it’s zero in the United States unless farmers have a license to cultivate cannabis with less than 0.2% THC.


Cannabis seeds, on the other hand, lack any cannabinoids due to a lack of growing space. Cannabis leaves, stems, and flowers, on the other hand, contain more cannabinoids. Users that wish to utilize cannabis’ medical properties prefer cannabis flower since it may be smoked or transformed into tinctures and edibles.

Although THC is the most well-known component of cannabis, there are other cannabinoids present in the plant that provide a variety of benefits. Cannabis strains high in THC may have effects, and they’re used for medical purposes like pain management. Strains with a low THC content but high in other cannabinoids, such as cannabidiol (CBD), may provide health benefits without making you high. Hemp, also known as cannabis containing less than 0.3 percent THC, may be grown to produce a variety of goods including:

  • paper
  • clothing
  • textiles
  • animal feed
  • plastic
  • food products, such as hemp seed, hemp milk, hemp protein powder, or hemp oil

Hemp may be cultivated to produce a variety of goods, including paper and textiles, since it grows quicker than trees and other crops. Hemp seed is high in protein and fiber and is therefore quite nutritious.


Hemp and marijuana are two different strains of Cannabis sativa. Aside from the amount of THC, there’s a difference between hemp and marijuana in terms of legality. In 2018, the Farm Bill authorized farmers to grow hemp with a 0.3 percent or lower level of THC content throughout the United States. It also legalized items produced from hemp seeds

Cannabis, in which the THC level is greater than 0.3 percent, is not legal across the United States. State legislation varies. It is permitted to use it both therapeutically and recreationally in certain states. Marijuana is still strictly prohibited in several jurisdictions.


Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid found in cannabis plants that has grown in popularity as hemp, which is a form of marijuana, has become legal throughout the United States. Many individuals consume CBD products hoping to obtain various medical benefits. Although CBD is present in every cannabis plant at low levels, it can be produced from either hemp or marijuana. If they contain less than 0.3 percent THC and are derived from hemp under the Farm Bill 2014 guidelines, they are only lawful if they fulfill the requirements.

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