Why Can’t We Process Debit and Credit Cards (Again)?
Last December the government passed the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, which was part of the 2018 Farm Bill signed into law. As of January 1, 2019 hemp is officially legal at the federal level! So why then, six months later, are cannabis farmers and CBD businesses still struggling to access financial institutions? Isn’t America supposed to be the champion of the free market and small businesses?
Legal hemp and cannabis are still very new. This creates uncertainty which is unappealing to financial institutions. To make things more complicated, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) still hasn’t put out clear guidelines and regulations for cannabis extracts which seems to only fuel the financial uncertainty surrounding the market.
Because major banks and financial institutions are operating in a grey area, they’re unable to help out small businesses in many ways. Currently, most cannabis related businesses are ineligible to receive bank accounts, merchant services, or small business loans. These barriers make it very difficult to succeed. It’s common knowledge there is major money to be made within the cannabis market. One has to wonder if small hemp and CBD businesses being barred from financial institutions does anything to quell competition for millionaire investors looking to cash in on the newly legal cannabis market?
Needless to say, the market needs a solution and fast. One potential solution would be for the SAFE Banking Act to be signed into law. It’s a bill which would provide specific protections for depository institutions that work with cannabis-related businesses and specifically, CBD businesses. This legislation would essentially open up the market for the financial institutions who are interested in working with cannabis clients that are obeying state and federal law. The bill has 138 co-sponsors in the House currently and stands to be the cannabis reform bill with more traction than any other introduced in Washington D.C. The passage of the SAFE Banking Act would be a huge step for the industry towards safety and transparency.
Hemp Fields Farm’s values affordability and accessibility as much as we value our commitment to being good stewards of the land. To stay accessible, we must champion for cannabis businesses and farmers to have access to financial institutions. It’s the only thing that will ensure a more level playing field as the cannabis market continues to boom. If you or a loved one benefits from using CBD and want to help small businesses like ours, write your representatives in the House (and Senate!) and urge them to pass the SAFE Banking Act. We need your voices to help advocate for the cannabis farmers that grow your medicine.
That being said, Hemp Fields Farm started the application process for high-risk merchant services–otherwise known as our ability to process your debit and credit cards, several months ago. These services charge notoriously high rates in exchange for working with markets that are perceived as unstable or high-risk, such as cannabis. We were notified this week that we’ve made it through the first round of screenings for some of the applications and are optimistic about having merchant services back in the near future.
To thank everyone for their patience and loyalty throughout this whole process we’d like to announce a 15% off sale on all of our organic CBD products! Sale will end the day we receive our credit card processing. Payments can be processed online via “e-Check”. We will be sending out an e-mail to announce the final 24 hours of the sale. While we are optimistic about receiving merchant services soon, we have no way to know for sure and are at the mercy of the banks as to when we will receive them. Make sure you’re subscribed to our e-mail list, sign-up is at the bottom of the web page. This will most likely be our last sale for awhile so don’t miss out! You simply can’t find another farm-to-shelf, full spectrum, CO2-extracted, organic CBD product for our prices.
Thank you for choosing to support our small farm and family out here in Colorado. We are infinitely grateful
Big love always,
Hemp Fields Farm Family