ASHEVILLE, N.C. (WSPA) - Hemp dispensary Hemp Farmacy opened in Asheville on Tuesday.
Proponents say hemp offers some of the benefits of marijuana without the high.
Hemp comes from the same species as marijuana, but it's not psychoactive. And unlike marijuana, it's legal.
At Hemp Farmacy, they sell it in everything from drops to "flowers" to dog treats. Customers can buy products to use on their skin, inhale, or ingest.
"We also can take in full spectrum products through sublinguals, which is a 30 second hold under the tongue," said Hemp Farmacy assistant manager Adam Puckett. "That's probably our most popular."
So what is hemp? The federal government actually defined it in the Farm Bill of 2014.
"The Farm Bill set the standard for industrial hemp to be defined as .3 percent THC or lower," Puckett said.
THC is a psychoactive chemical in marijuana. But in hemp:
"You have no high. No psychotropic effects," said Hemp Farmacy general manager Amelia Cash.
Some of the products at Hemp Farmacy contain trace amounts of THC. But some of them rely on another another component found in cannabis: CBD, which is used for therapeutic purposes. Patients say CBD helps with things like anxiety, insomnia, and even epilepsy.
"It's a very mellowing…. Your thoughts kind of calm. You can focus on things," Cash said. "High doses are really great…like I'll take for sleep. Because it reduces the rumination, or like those racing thoughts that you get at the end of the night."
You don't need an appointment, prescription, or even an ID to buy hemp because it's not recognized as a drug by the FDA. It's sold as a dietary supplement.
However, Hemp Farmacy partners with Integrated Pain Solutions in Asheville to provide more guidance.
"That partnership allows for a nurse practioner to be alongside our retail facility," Puckett said.
That way, you can make an appointment to see how hemp may be incorporated into a pain management regiment.
"The idea is to improve quality of life," Cash said. "And to reduce opium medication, reduce all the Advil, Tylenol, Oxycodone."