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Hemp food is legal, will I test positive for drugs?

Hemp seed can be used in a variety of products.
Hemp seed can be used in a variety of products. Marc Stapelberg

MANY are revelling in the new laws that allow hemp foods to be legally consumed in Australia, but the common question on everyone's lips - will I test positive for drugs? - is causing confusion.

This can be asked of any hemp product such as hemp milk, seeds, oil or more solid foods such as bread.

HEMP Party and HEMP Embassy President Michael Balderstone said saliva testing was up in the air.

"State police forces, especially NSW police have forcefully argued and maintained that hemp seed food consumption will interfere with their saliva testing and people will provide positive results which will put further pressure on our courts and the judicial system," Mr Balderstone said.

But it's been confirmed many times THC levels in hemp foods are extremely low (or non-existent), ranging from 0 - 0.5%

Lismore solicitor Steve Bolt said if the consumption of hemp foods were to be used as a defence to a positive reading on a drug test, the answer was not a simple yes or no.

"No one really knows what exactly is detected by that testing," Mr Bolt said.

"It depends how much THC you consume over what time frame.

"It also depends where the seed comes from, there could be little bits of cannabis in it if some of the leaf or husk got in, although it's not enough to notice the effects but it could be there."

Mr Bolt said said it wasn't a matter of saying hemp foods had been consumed before the test - for it to stand up in court as a defence there would have to be an honest and reasonable belief and argument that it was the only type of product consumed before the test results.

"It doesn't provide an absolute defence but it would be something for the magistrate to look into case by case," he said.

Topics:  drug driving test hemp food northern rivers court police



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