Complete Guide To Hemp Laws in Texas

texas hemp laws explained

This comprehensive guide offers an in-depth exploration of the laws and regulations pertaining to the cultivation, processing, and sale of hemp and CBD products in Texas. It provides clarity on the responsibilities and requirements of stakeholders, the role of the Texas Department of Agriculture, and the current legal standing of substances like Delta-8 THC. The guide seeks to demystify the complex landscape of hemp laws in Texas, presenting a resource for industry participants, regulators, and consumers alike to better understand the legalities surrounding this burgeoning industry in the state.

Key Takeaways

  • The Texas Department of Agriculture oversees hemp regulations in Texas, including cultivation and production.
  • Hemp cultivation in Texas must adhere to strict THC content limits, with the THC concentration in hemp not exceeding 0.3%.
  • Licensing and registration processes for hemp cultivation and processing are managed by the Texas Department of State Health Services.
  • Texas has specific regulations for the cultivation, processing, and sale of consumable hemp products and CBD products, including restrictions on THC concentration and licensing requirements.

Understanding Texas Hemp Laws

Navigating through the complexities of Texas hemp laws, one must first comprehend the regulatory framework governing the production, distribution, and consumption of hemp and its derivatives in the state. The Texas Department of Agriculture is chiefly responsible for overseeing this framework, with the guiding statutes being the Texas Agriculture Code, Chapters 121 and 122, created by House Bill 1325.

These regulatory guidelines focus primarily on the cultivation of industrial hemp, but they also align with federal laws while reflecting specific Texas statutes. For instance, they stipulate that the THC content in hemp cannot exceed the federal legal limit of 0.3 percent. This is crucial for maintaining the legitimacy and legality of the Texas hemp industry.

Also worth noting are the licensing and registration processes for hemp manufacturers and distributors, as well as retail sellers. These processes are managed through an online system by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). The department also defines what constitutes consumable hemp products (CHPs), which are any products processed or manufactured for consumption that contain hemp.

The proposed rule amendment of 25 TAC 300.104, currently open for formal comment, is another crucial part of hemp laws in Texas. This rule amendment allows stakeholders to provide input, fostering a more inclusive and comprehensive regulatory environment for hemp licensing and the overall hemp industry in Texas.

Understanding these laws is essential for anyone involved in or considering involvement in the hemp industry in Texas. It ensures compliance, promotes ethical business practices, and contributes to the growing success of the industry in the state.

Basics of Industrial Hemp

Transitioning to the basics of industrial hemp, it is necessary to highlight that this plant, scientifically known as Cannabis sativa L., is the core species legally cultivated under both federal and Texas laws. Recognized as a dynamic agricultural commodity, industrial hemp possesses an extensive range of applications including fiber production, oil extraction, and more.

Under the supervision of the Texas Department of State, industrial hemp programs have been established to monitor the cultivation of hemp in Texas. These programs are supported by the Department of Agriculture (TDA) and the USDA Farm Service Agency, both playing a pivotal role in implementing and enforcing hemp laws in Texas.

The cultivation of hemp in Texas is governed by Chapters 121 and 122 of the Texas Agriculture Code. These legislative directives, created under House Bill 1325, outline the stringent regulations for the cultivation, processing, and sale of hemp plants. Moreover, the TDA and the Texas Department of State have collaborated to provide comprehensive guidance on the rules and regulations for consumable hemp products in Texas.

In compliance with the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp in Texas is legally defined as cannabis with a THC concentration of less than 0.3%. This definition not only removes hemp from the controlled substances schedules but also allows for the legal production and sale of hemp-derived CBD products in Texas.

Cultivating Hemp in Texas

In the realm of Texas Agriculture, the cultivation of hemp is governed by a specific set of regulations and requirements to ensure the legality and sustainability of the industry. When the Texas Department of Agriculture opened the state's Hemp Program, it established the legal structure for cultivating hemp in Texas. The guidelines are outlined under the Texas Administrative Code, which aligns with both state and federal laws.

Hemp Production in Texas follows rigorous licensing and permit protocols. The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) requires an online licensing application for consumable hemp manufacturers and distributors. In addition to this, a Retail Hemp Registration is mandated for sellers who retail sell Consumable Hemp Products (CHPs) without making any changes to the product or packaging, including online retail sellers.

On the production side, producers, handlers, or those who sample or collect hemp need a Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) license. This licensing process involves an annual online application, a criminal background check, and payment of fees. All producers also need a lot permit for each lot where hemp will be produced.

Moreover, Texas law stipulates that the transportation of hemp outside a production facility requires a transportation certificate or manifest. This rule ensures that the production of hemp is monitored and controlled, promoting a sustainable and lawful hemp industry in Texas.

The regulations for cultivating hemp in Texas are therefore comprehensive, aiming to align the state's Hemp Production with the standards set by the Texas Administrative Code and federal law.

Processing Regulations for Hemp

Moving on to the processing regulations for hemp, Texas maintains a stringent set of rules to ensure the safety and quality of hemp-derived products. The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) oversees these regulations and uses an online process for licensing consumable hemp manufacturers and distributors, as well as registering retail sellers of consumable hemp products.

In Texas, the sale of consumable hemp products is subject to strict licensing and regulations to ensure that THC levels do not exceed the legal limit. Consumable Hemp Products (CHPs) must not contain more than 0.3 percent concentration of Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). To ensure compliance, the Department performs regular checks and testing of products on the market.

The processing of hemp crops into consumable products is also under the purview of the Department. This includes the issuance of lot permits, regulation of transportation requirements, and the setting of fees for hemp producers in Texas. These measures are in place to ensure the highest standards of product safety and quality are maintained.

The laws regarding consumable hemp products in Texas can be found on the Texas Health and Safety Code webpage. The rules are also detailed on the Texas Administrative Code webpage. It is crucial for all involved in the production, distribution, and sale of consumable hemp products in the state to familiarize themselves with these regulations to ensure they are operating within the law.

CBD Laws in Texas

Navigating the complexities of CBD laws in Texas, it's crucial to understand that the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) holds jurisdiction over the licensing and registration of consumable hemp product manufacturers, distributors, and retail sellers. Under State Law, these CBD products are classified as consumable hemp products (CHPs) and must not exceed a 0.3 percent concentration of Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) to maintain their legal status.

The Texas Health and Safety Code, as well as the Texas Administrative Code, provide the legal framework for consumable hemp products, including CBD. They stipulate that a license is required for the manufacture, distribution, and retail sale of these products. The DSHS Hemp Program manages the application process, outlining specific requirements and procedures for obtaining a DSHS Retail Hemp Registration or a DSHS Consumable Hemp Product License.

Moreover, THC testing plays a critical role in determining the status of CBD products. Products exceeding the stipulated THC threshold are deemed illegal, underscoring the importance of accurate testing and compliance. Texas Supreme Court rulings have further shaped the landscape of CBD laws in Texas, often providing additional clarity on contentious issues.

It's clear that the legal status of CBD in Texas is underpinned by a complex system of laws, regulations, and court rulings. Understanding this landscape is crucial for manufacturers, distributors, and retailers, ensuring they operate within the boundaries of the law and maintain the trust of their customers. As the CBD industry continues to evolve, so too will the regulatory environment, making it essential to stay informed about the latest developments.

Retailing Hemp Products

Since the amendment of hemp laws in Texas, retailing consumable hemp products, including those for smoking, has become a regulated and viable business activity. The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) now mandates a Retail Hemp Registration for sellers retailing hemp products in Texas without altering the product or the packaging. This includes online retail sales as well.

Furthermore, according to the new laws concerning hemp or cannabis, a Consumable Hemp Product License is required for manufacturers, white labelers, repackagers, and wholesale sellers. This indicates that regulation extends to all aspects of the retail sale process. The products retailed must not contain more than 0.3 percent concentration of Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), as per the TDA Hemp Bill. This requirement ensures that all retailers adhere to the same quality standards.

Hemp seeds and hemp-derived CBD products are also subject to these laws, with retailers obligated to ensure proper labelling and adherence to product quality standards. Compliance with local regulations regarding the sale and use of these products in Texas is also mandatory. Therefore, the retail sale of hemp seeds and other hemp products must align with these regulations.

Consuming Hemp in Texas

Understanding the laws surrounding the consumption of hemp in Texas is crucial for both consumers and retailers, as it ensures adherence to state regulations and promotes responsible usage. The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has established guidelines for the distribution, retail sale, and consumption of hemp products, thereby making it an integral part of the state's health and agriculture sector.

The consumption of hemp, scientifically known as Cannabis sativa, is regulated due to its potential to contain the psychoactive compound found in marijuana, Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). However, for consumption to be legal in Texas, the THC concentration in hemp products must not exceed the acceptable hemp THC level of 0.3 percent. This regulation aims to prevent the psychoactive effects typically associated with marijuana use.

Consumable hemp products in Texas cover a wide range, including food, drugs, devices, and cosmetics. Manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of these consumable hemp products must be licensed or registered under DSHS, ensuring that the products meet the specified THC concentration level and are safe for consumer use.

In addition, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension provides valuable resources for those in the hemp industry. This education and research institution plays a key role in promoting responsible hemp consumption by providing detailed information about hemp laws in Texas.

Delta-8 and Texas Law

In the context of Texas law, the status of Delta-8, a derivative of the cannabis plant, is subject to ongoing debates and legal complexities. As a substance similar to Delta-9 THC, the psychoactive compound in marijuana, its legality heavily depends on the delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration. Under Chapter 443 of the Texas Health & Safety Code, consumable hemp products with less than 0.3% Delta-9 THC are permitted.

However, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) initially classified Delta-8 as a Schedule I controlled substance. A temporary injunction has, for the moment, removed Delta-8 from this list as the case continues to be reviewed. This implies that for now, businesses in Texas must bear in mind the shifting status of Delta-8 while navigating the hemp laws and regulations.

At the federal level, the stance towards hemp and its derivatives has witnessed a significant shift, especially after the Farm bill removed hemp from the list of controlled substances. This federal legislation has, in turn, influenced state laws including those in Texas.

In line with the federal changes, Texas has made efforts to regulate hemp through the introduction of House Bill 1325. This bill allows the Commissioner of the Texas DSHS to establish or modify controlled substance schedules. However, a license is required to produce and sell consumable hemp products.

Understanding the dynamics of Delta-8 in the United States, particularly in Texas, is crucial due to the ongoing debates and the potential health and legal implications. Therefore, stakeholders must stay updated with the developments to ensure compliance.

Licensing Requirements for Hemp

Navigating the licensing landscape for hemp production in Texas involves complying with several mandates set forth by the Department of State Health Services (DSHS). The DSHS uses an online process to license consumable hemp manufacturers and distributors, and register retail sellers of consumable hemp products (CHPs). This process ensures that all entities involved in the production, distribution, and sales of hemp adhere strictly to approved hemp standards and federal regulations.

One of the key licensing requirements for hemp in Texas is the obligation to obtain the DSHS Consumable Hemp Product License. This license is required for manufacturers, white labelers, repackagers, and wholesale sellers of CHPs. The permit application process can be found on the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) website. Applicants must provide necessary information such as the license number, business details, and personal information. While registration applicants are not required to undergo a Federal Bureau of Investigation fingerprint criminal background check, they are nonetheless subject to this requirement under certain circumstances.

Moreover, all hemp producers need to obtain a lot permit for each lot where hemp will be produced. This is to ensure that the hemp from the list of approved varieties is grown under regulated conditions. The permit application process, as well as other details regarding the licensing requirements, can be found on the TDA website.

Texas hemp producers are also subject to various fees, including a $100 license application fee and an annual $100 renewal fee. These fees are in line with the Food and Drug Administration's guidelines for the production and sale of hemp.

Hemp and Texas State Law Library

How does the Texas State Law Library serve as a resource in comprehending the complex landscape of hemp laws in Texas? The library acts as a vital tool, providing a wealth of information and resources for those navigating the intricate web of regulations surrounding hemp as cannabis. This includes farmers looking to diversify their crops, individuals interested in health benefits of hemp, and businesses seeking to participate in the burgeoning hemp market.

The library compiles and maintains current resources from various state agencies, including the Texas Department of State Health Services and AgriLife Extension Service. This makes it easier for interested parties to find the necessary information about hemp seed cultivation, THC by dry weight limitations, and compliance with state laws. Alongside this, the library also provides access to numerous legal documents, making it simple for anyone to understand the legalities around growing cannabis in Texas.

One of the key areas covered is the detailed process on how to submit an application to become a licensed hemp manufacturer or distributor. The library provides a step-by-step guide on the application process, ensuring that those interested in entering the hemp industry are well informed and prepared.

In addition to these resources, the library also offers guidance on the health implications of hemp use, which is particularly useful for those seeking to use hemp for medicinal purposes.

In essence, the Texas State Law Library is an indispensable resource for anyone seeking to understand the complexities of hemp laws in Texas, providing a comprehensive guide that makes navigating these laws significantly easier.

Quality Control for CBD Products

While ensuring the quality of CBD products in Texas is paramount, it is mandated by law that all products must not contain more than 0.3 percent concentration of Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a regulation aimed at promoting consumer safety and confidence in the market.

This law is part of the broader health and safety measures implemented by the Texas Department of State Health Services. This department provides guidance on the rules regarding the production and sale of products containing CBD, derived from the cannabis plants. The goal is to ensure the highest standards of quality control, especially considering the growing market of medical marijuana and related products.

The process starts with the regulation of the lot crop. The cannabis plants used in the production of CBD products must adhere to strict cultivation practices to ensure that the derived product is of the highest quality. Retailers, in turn, must comply with stringent product quality and labeling standards, further emphasizing the importance of quality control.

CBD products' quality is critical at the federal level too, not just in Texas. It is important to choose products from reputable sources that can guarantee the quality and purity of their products. To this end, third-party lab testing is recommended. These labs verify the cannabinoid content and ensure that the products are safe for consumption.

Traveling With CBD in Texas

Transitioning from the topic of quality control, it is pivotal to understand the regulations related to traveling with CBD in Texas, given the state's stringent laws pertaining to the THC content in these products. CBD products for sale must meet the Texas standard of containing less than 0.3% THC, as per the state's list of controlled substances. This rule is not only a final rule but one of the most significant changes in Texas hemp laws, making it paramount for both consumers and retailers to verify compliance.

In the event of non-compliance, the state enforces a Disposal Report procedure for any CBD products exceeding the THC limit. The process involves detailing the prohibited activities, including the sale and transportation of non-compliant products. As such, travelers carrying CBD in Texas need to be mindful of their product's THC content to avoid potential legal complications.

Moreover, retailers are required to provide a Transport Manifest for every shipment of CBD products. This document serves to ensure transparency and legality during the transportation process, further emphasizing the state's commitment to regulating the CBD market.

The constantly evolving landscape of hemp law in Texas necessitates travelers to remain updated on the current regulations. The need to source CBD products from reputable suppliers who adhere to these rules is also emphasized. By understanding these laws, travelers can ensure they are compliant and can enjoy the benefits of CBD without any legal hassles. So, while traveling with CBD in Texas may require some extra considerations, these steps help maintain a regulated and safe market for all.

Contacting Texas Hemp Authorities

Navigating the intricate landscape of hemp laws necessitates direct contact with Texas Hemp Authorities to ensure full compliance with the regulations. The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Department of Agriculture serve as the primary authorities for health and industrial hemp-related concerns respectively.

DSHS has established a streamlined online process for licensing and registration of consumable hemp manufacturers, distributors, and retail sellers. This system also allows for replacement license documents to be printed directly from their Online Licensing Services webpage. For additional information or Frequently Asked Questions about consumable hemp products, including requirements and restrictions, the Texas Administrative Code CHP Definitions webpage is a valuable resource.

The Texas Department of Agriculture handles matters related to cultivation and production of industrial hemp. They provide information on licensing application requirements, lot permit issue date, transportation certificates, and associated fees. An Orientation Video is also available to offer what you need to know about the hemp cultivation process.

If there are concerns or issues, the option to File a Complaint is provided by both departments. Formal comments about the proposed rule amendment can be submitted to DSHS through April 17, 2023, by email. For instance, if there are disputes about test results or a need to remove hemp, these authorities stand ready to assist.

Contacting the Texas Hemp Authorities is an essential step in navigating the complex realm of hemp laws in Texas, ensuring you remain within the bounds of legal compliance while conducting hemp-related activities.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Sell Hemp Legally in Texas?

To legally sell hemp in Texas, you must comply with regulations from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). This includes obtaining necessary licenses and registrations. Your consumable hemp products (CHPs) must contain no more than 0.3% Delta-9 THC and exclude non-FDA approved ingredients. Adherence to labeling and product quality standards is mandatory. It's also advised to conduct third-party lab testing for quality assurance.

Can I Be a Felon and Get a Hemp License in Texas?

Yes, it is possible for a felon to obtain a hemp license in Texas. The Texas Department of State Health Services does not require an FBI fingerprint criminal background check for applicants. However, providing false information or having a history of false statements can result in denial. It's important to provide accurate information and complete the mandatory orientation video during the application process.

What Happens if You Get Caught With CBD in Texas?

In Texas, if you are caught with CBD, the repercussions depend on the THC content. If it exceeds 0.3%, you may face legal consequences. Additionally, the Texas Department of State Health Services has stringent requirements for labeling and packaging CBD products. Non-compliance can lead to penalties. Furthermore, individual municipalities may have their own CBD regulations, making it essential to understand both state and local laws.

What Is the Farm Bill for Hemp in 2023?

The 2023 Farm Bill for hemp is a set of federal regulations that govern the cultivation, processing, and sale of industrial hemp. The bill aims to further integrate hemp into the mainstream agricultural landscape, providing opportunities for growth in the industry. Key aspects include the removal of hemp as a controlled substance, provisions for crop insurance, and the establishment of a federal regulatory framework for hemp production in the U.S.


In summary, the comprehensive guide to Texas hemp laws offers an extensive understanding of the regulations governing hemp and CBD products. It highlights the key roles of manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and the Texas Department of Agriculture, emphasizing on licensing, registration, cultivation, processing, quality control, and travel regulations. The guide is instrumental in navigating the legal complexities of the hemp industry in Texas, while shedding light on the current status of Delta-8 THC.

Marshan B.


Marshan B.

Marshan Beals is a co-partner at Client Verge Inc. With 8 years of experience in digital marketing, his expertise extends beyond digital marketing for cannabis brands. He is also a sponsor of the High Profits ebook, available for download when you sign up for our email list.