Irish hemp farmers are operating in a legal grey area

Farmers and industry representatives say Irish law is holding back the development of a large-scale hemp industry, due to a no-tolerance policy over the cannabinoid compound THC, which forms part of the plant

Daniel Lyons and Laura Jayne Foley, founders of Wild Atlantic Hemp: ‘Until they put a sub-line into the legislation saying THC trace amounts are allowed in food from hemp production, you’re still going to be in a grey area’. Picture: Barry Cronin

Daniel Lyonds and Laura Jayne Foley, a husband and wife hemp farming duo, are operating within what they refer to as a “grey area” in Irish law: they are growing and processing the flower of a hemp plant to make homemade cannabidiol (CBD) oil.

While processing the flower of a plant grown legally in Ireland seems like an innocuous venture, especially because it cannot get a person “high”, it could be regarded as in violation ...