In our February and March issues, the Farm Journal editorial staff introduces a series on Cannabis and its potential applications across agriculture. The series, across all Farm Journal media platforms, covers hemp production for farmers, possible feed sources for livestock producers and, in Bovine Veterinarian, potential veterinary applications for Cannabis products such as CBD and THC.
So, tying in with that effort, here is the question our panel of veterinary students and recent DVM graduates address this month:
What are your initial thoughts on the potential for using Cannabis products such as CBD or THC for production or therapeutic applications in beef or dairy cattle?
Response from Paul Riedel, Lincoln Memorial University:
In hindsight, much of the cannabis controversy over the last century will certainly seem unnecessary and harmful. Lulls in rationality have been avoidable and drawn-out, but blind haste in progress would be just as foolish. Reasonable time and effort should be taken to strip unscientific claims off all sides of the issue. A growing body of evidence points to a wide range of potential benefits of cannabis products for cattle. Research across species shows cannabis has an exceptionally high therapeutic index, dwarfing that of drugs routinely used in bovine medicine. As food animal drug restrictions mount and markets stumble, practitioners and producers deserve every safe and practical tool available. At long last, common sense will prevail in the political squabble over cannabis. Cannabis markets will stabilize, costs will decrease, and access to all effective livestock products will expand.
Over the next two weeks, we’ll feature each individual response from our panel of veterinary students and recent graduates. Meanwhile, follow our ongoing coverage of Cannabis in U.S. agriculture.
See previous student responses from BovineVetOnline: