Hemp Vs Marijuana: 4 Things You Should Know

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The cannabis industry has changed dramatically in the last few years. A short time ago, people associated weed with bums who want to get high and sit on the couch all day munching on chips. It was a general perception that one could only buy weed from shady people in a dark alley, and no person who valued their reputation would dare to admit that they smoke weed.

These days, however, more people are talking about their experience with this natural compound and sharing how it is changing their life. Some are using it to beat anxiety, while others hope to slow down heart disease progression or Alzheimer’s. Others are using it to treat insomnia, beat depression, or lose weight.

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As a result, there are far more cannabis-based products on the market, offering everything from oils to balms, vape juices, and edibles. But before you set out on a shopping spree, you must understand the differences between the marijuana-derived and hemp-derived products out there because the differences are significant, and they can affect your experience substantially.

Critical differences between hemp and marijuana

Variety is not an issue in this industry. There are 50 different varieties of marijuana seeds, and that is just one example. When you delve into this world, you will quickly learn about two main cannabis species, specifically hemp and marijuana.

Learning the key differences between these two is essential to purchase products safely and attain the experience you were hoping for with this natural compound. The following are the four main differences between hemp and marijuana.

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The THC levels are different.

The most significant difference between hemp and marijuana is their THC levels. Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the component that causes psychoactive effects. While both hemp and marijuana contain THC, the amount is different, and it is why you will get high with marijuana while there is no risk of getting high or overdosing with hemp.

Hemp contains less than 0.3 percent THC, making it a safer alternative for users who are not looking to get high. Many choose hemp over marijuana because they can ease their anxiety at work without the risk of getting high in a professional setting.

Moreover, some users prefer hemp because there is no risk of getting paranoid or becoming more anxious due to fear of losing control. On the other hand, marijuana can contain up to 30 percent THC, making it a potent compound if you wish to experience that sense of elation that comes with THC’s psychoactive effects.

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Their legality status.

The THC levels in these natural compounds play a massive role in their legality as well. It is the reason why hemp-derived products that have less than 0.3 percent of THC can be bought safely, without the risk of getting arrested in the US, thanks to the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018.

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Hemp products can be bought online and in brick and mortar stores. Even the stigma around hemp products is different when compared to marijuana. Users are more open to sharing their experience with hemp on social media and even promoting hemp products without fear of getting in trouble or coming across as unprofessional.

On the other hand, purchasing marijuana products is still considered illegal under the Controlled Substance Act. Flying with marijuana is a riskier endeavor than flying with hemp-based products and even buying marijuana products is not as easy as buying hemp products.

The production of products varies too.

Marijuana has particular use in the world. While most users choose it as a recreational tool because of its mind-altering effects, it can also be a powerful tool for medicinal reasons. Indeed, preliminary studies have shown that marijuana can help treat certain health conditions, such as cancer symptoms.

On the other hand, manufacturers use hemp for various products, including plastic, clothing, paper, and even building material. Hemp has also been incorporated in popular foods such as chocolate, oil, and flour to experience this natural compound through edibles. One can purchase hemp in the form of seeds, oil tinctures, balms, bath bombs, vape juices, and more.

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The environment for cultivation is different.

If you are looking to grow marijuana or hemp, it’s vital to note that their growing conditions vary as well. Hemp needs the outdoors to grow at its best because its size and yield are essential. The good thing about hemp is that it does not need so much attention, and it will grow when given the right conditions.

Marijuana is a little more delicate. This natural compound requires a more controlled environment where you can manage conditions for optimal growth. The most important thing about growing marijuana is to have female plants, which are the ones that produce those all-important flowers. Accordingly, lighting, temperature, and humidity must be optimal at every growth stage for proper cultivation.

There you have it, four critical differences between marijuana and hemp. Remember to always check the label and other information on the brand’s website before purchasing your products. Some hemp-based products may still have more than 0.3 percent THC, so you must check your products well, especially before traveling.


  1. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4604171/
  2. bhf.org.uk/informationsupport/heart-matters-magazine/medical/cbd-and-the-heart
  3. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6970569/

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