Does Hemp Smell Like Pot?

If you are an avid user of hemp or pot, you probably know the difference in smell between the two plants. Most people are unaware that hemp and marijuana are names for one plant: cannabis. Since pot is the slang word for marijuana, as it is weed, it goes without saying that hemp and pot smell the same.

When you read about marijuana and the cannabis plant, you may not see many materials creating a difference between them. The reason is that there is none. Cannabis is the main plant, and marijuana is just a name for a part of the plant. Hemp is also a name for another part of the same plant. Therefore, it is not odd to hear the terms interchangeably used.


Hemp Explained

Hemp is a name given to the less potent part of the cannabis plant. It means this part does not contain high amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. THC is what makes or mars the type of cannabis you possess. While the plant has many compounds you can derive from it, only a few have made it to the limelight so far. THC is one of them, and another is cannabidiol or CBD. Both compounds are cannabinoids.

The potency of the psychoactive THC is what makes hemp what it is. Typically, it contains less than or equal to 0.3% of the compound, making it safe for regular use. That means any user of hemp will have to consume large amounts of it before it can have any effect on them.

Marijuana Explained

Marijuana is that part of the cannabis plant that gets you high. The reason is that it contains more than 0.3% of THC. Therefore, it is the general name for the cannabis strain that produces a psychoactive effect. The THC content tends to vary by strain, so some strains have a much higher potency than others.

People confuse hemp and marijuana. In some circles, they are the same and produce the same results. In fact, some may call it hemp as a general name. However, manufacturers typically use hemp extracts instead of marijuana extracts for their products. CBD extracts from hemp, for example, deliver excellent results without producing any psychoactive effect.

Difference Between Hemp and Marijuana

Hemp & marijuanaThe primary difference between hemp and marijuana or pot is the THC content. While the former has only trace amounts of the compound, the latter has more potent amounts. You may find some people react to cannabis better than others; it is not only about the tolerance level. The confusion about this difference leads to not being able to tell one from the other. Consequently, users with low tolerance use marijuana and react to it.

You may now understand why law enforcement frowns on marijuana but not so much on hemp. Products derived from the cannabis plant have to undergo tests to determine which contains marijuana and hemp. That is why purchasing and carrying CBD products without authorization, or a prescription may land you in trouble. You can derive CBD from either hemp or marijuana; the difference is potency and legality.

When to Use Hemp or Marijuana

The first use most enthusiasts put the cannabis plant to is to produce rolls, tinctures, and edibles. When manufacturers extract the cannabinoids from the leaves, stalks, or flowers of the plant, they typically put them in these products. However, there are other uses for cannabis.

Strains with high THC content create a psychoactive effect, which may be ideal for managing pain and stress. That is why you find some people can smoke, vape, or use medical marijuana for edibles. They have the license to do so, legally speaking. Moreover, the THC effect is what makes it suitable for this purpose.

However, strains with low THC potency are excellent for people who do not want to get high. These strains typically contain many other cannabinoids apart from THC, making them highly effective. One of such cannabinoids is CBD, popular in many quarters for its numerous health benefits.

Due to its low THC content, other uses for hemp include making clothing, paper, animal feed, textiles, and plastic. It is also beneficial in making hemp oil, hemp protein powder, and hemp seed. The fact that hemp or cannabis has a faster growth rate than other plants and trees makes it ideal for producing these items, especially paper. Besides, hemp seed is rich in fiber and is a complete protein. Therefore, it may help with digestion.

Which to Use

If you want to know whether or not hemp smells like pot, it may mean you have a choice of the two options. The smell should not be a primary concern; you should focus more on the effect and benefits. If you can handle the smell of one, the scent of the other should not be offensive since they both come from the same plant.


While marijuana, which is the same as pot, can have its extracts infused into products, most users smoke or vape it. The compounds have a quicker and longer-lasting effect on the system that way. However, remember that marijuana for recreational purposes is still illegal in most states. So, it is best to handle it with caution.

On the other hand, hemp is a safer option. Hemp-derived THC has low potency, and CBD from hemp is more popular because of the lack of psychoactive effects. Therefore, brands usually claim the CBD in their products is hemp-derived because of the law, even though some have an unusually high THC content.

You do not need permission to use hemp or its derivatives in the country. The problem usually lies in the inability of law enforcement officers to test and determine whether the products have hemp or marijuana. As a result, they assume they are all marijuana until proven otherwise.

Furthermore, there is more CBD in hemp than in marijuana, just like THC is more in marijuana than in hemp. So, if you are using hemp instead of pot, you are likely to get better CBD benefits.

In addition, know the laws surrounding both hemp and pot. Some states allow for getting marijuana with a medical card, but some do not allow it. At the federal level, marijuana is not legal unless for medical purposes. Even then, there are still regulations on usage.


If you wonder whether or not hemp smells like pot, the answer is simple. Hemp smells like pot, and the reason is that both are parts of the same cannabis plant. The marked differences lie in the THC content and legality. There are also the possible uses you can put each one to and the resultant effect.

Remember that marijuana has many adverse side effects, mainly when used for a long time. Hemp also has side effects, but not as much or as debilitating as marijuana. The primary reason is because of the high amounts of THC in marijuana. Research is still ongoing on the possible effects on major human organs.

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