Flawed but Promising, Could the Industrial Hemp Farming Act Be the Key to Hemp's Future? By: Kit O'Connell: Ministry of Hemp. Published. Flawed But Promising, Could The Industrial Hemp Farming Act Be The Key To Hemp's Future?. Production and sale of CBD from hemp, the non-psychoactive cousin of marijuana, has CBD 'gold rush' could mean big business for Wisconsin's hemp industry Photos: Hemp won't get you stoned, but many people see big payoff .. For now, though, the future looks promising, said Jimenez, the Mount.
Farming Be Industrial Hemp Hemp’s The Flawed Promising, To Future? Key But The Act Could
This impulse accelerated when Lewis' younger brother, a Special Forces sniper and medic named Fred-Curtis Lewis, came home from Afghanistan after taking a bullet to the head.
As he watched his brother struggle with the brain injury, Mike Lewis noted the one place where the wounded soldier seemed most at ease. The brothers were galvanized to enlist more veterans in the farming life. Along with joining Homegrown by Heroes, they launched Growing Warriors, which provides hands-in-the-dirt training and technical advice to vets who want to start their own farms.
This summer, on the hilly plot he renamed "Healing Ground," Lewis had six veterans working for him. Next year, he's hoping to hire a man crew. Two new Growing Warriors chapters have started in North Carolina and West Virginia, with hundreds of vets now signed up to join the cause.
Lewis is a natural polymath, but when Comer initially approached him about hemp, he was skeptical. Ultimately, he "wanted to be involved with anything that helps grow the bottom line for a family farm," he said.
For more than years, hemp was a common crop in the U. In Colonial America, it was a staple famously grown by the nation's founders and early presidents. In , 3, farms produced nearly 18, tons in Kentucky alone. The confusion, controversy and legal wrangling over the plant's domestication dates to the federal Marijuana Tax Act, the law that conflated the textile crop with psychoactive marijuana, a drug that was culturally associated with Mexican migrants and African-American musicians.
But with the passage of the Controlled Substances Act, the last significant vestiges of the industry were snuffed out. Unwritten troves of folk wisdom and of region-specific agricultural knowledge were lost. Hemp is not a drug as commonsense would define it. By federal and state law, the plants growing on Lewis' Healing Ground cannot legally contain more than 0.
At such low levels, a person could smoke or ingest pounds of the stuff with no discernible effect. As Woolsey put it at the hearing in Frankfort, "The specter of people getting high on industrial hemp is pretty much exactly like saying you can get drunk on O'Doul's. But these basic facts are also the most common misconceptions. Confusion between cannabis as a textile crop and cannabis as a drug remain the central drag on its full reemergence.
According to the federal Drug Enforcement Agency, marijuana is a Schedule 1 narcotic , "the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence. Schedule 4 drugs, with a "low potential for abuse," include Xanax, Valium, Ativan and Ambien. The Drug Enforcement Agency acknowledges that hemp and marijuana are not the same thing, but it continues to monitor hemp as if they were. After the agency seized a shipment of Italian hemp seeds in Louisville, Comer filed suit, which eventually led to an out of court settlement and the decision to contract private farmers like Lewis and shield them from federal law enforcement.
The DEA may have released the seeds, but they closely monitor the pilot projects for violations, such as expanding research beyond what is narrowly specified by state and federal law, or for marijuana hiding among hemp crops.
We gather the evidence. We present those facts to a prosecutor. They decide if it's warranted to prosecute. If it's true hemp, less than. Lewis said that since joining the hemp crusade, he has met plenty of people who believe the plant is the best hope for mankind. When I visited the farm, I tagged along with members of the Ohio Hemp Chamber of Commerce, an enthusiastic group that is lobbying for legalization in its home state; they had driven down in an RV to tour Kentucky's pilot projects.
Lewis explained the basics of breaking and retting hemp, processes that separate the long fibers from the woody pith. He handed out strands of long, wispy fibers and challenged us to tear them apart. The fibers looked delicate, but as I pulled on them, I realized that they would cut my skin before I could rip them in two. One of those farmers, Dennis McEndree from Wayne County, Ohio, explained how hemp can be used by organic farmers for weed prevention and introduced me to the difficult-to-prove but widely held belief that the Marijuana Tax Act was pushed through by newspaper and paper mill baron William Randolph Hearst as a way to remove competition in the paper market.
As Lewis walked us from his fiber workshop to the barn, the group's energy level started to rise. Beach, a tall and gregarious man who owns Hemptations, the largest hemp emporium in Cincinnati, carrying the kinds of processed and manufactured products that are legal under federal law. My shirt, down to my shoes and my underwear," he said, beaming. We entered the barn and climbed the steep, irregular wooden slats to the loft, where the musky, vegetal smell of hemp oil hovered in the dim light.
Lewis walked us through the stands of bushels, explaining how different stalks can be stripped using different techniques to provide different types of fiber.
This first year's crop was grown from a cultivar called Futura 75, the same strain, he said, that BMW uses for paneling in its car doors. In the center of the loft, hemp stalks lay next to piles of dried leaves, and seeds crunched under our feet. Jeremy Koosed, a hemp-seed food producer, bent down to scoop up some raw seeds and carefully put them in his mouth, one at a time, gazing into the distance and chewing slowly. Even raw, "they have a natural, nutty taste. It's been 20 years since conservative and liberal protectionists warned against the dangers of Clinton-era globalization.
As manufacturing and even service companies were outsourced to countries with cheap labor, the effects hit rural America the hardest. According to the agrarian philosopher, an emphasis on modest, local concerns is the surest path to prosperity. Small- and medium-scale farming, the theory goes, will shore up regional distribution channels and self-reliance that sustained and defined rural America for generations.
Comer's Department of Agriculture doesn't quote Berry in its promotional material, but the agrarian's spirit hovers over the issue in his home state.
The hemp gamble is based in part on a simple, radical, Berry-esque question: Can rural America's future be saved by resurrecting the best elements of its past?
Lewis talks about self-reliance as the common goal for both his hemp and Growing Warriors projects. But in this early phase of legalization, he is courting investment and interest from outside groups, a far-flung network committed to small farms and regional markets. Under this law, each state was allowed to determine the size and form of these hemp research programs.
Further underlining the legality of the hemp grown by these research initiatives, the and Appropriations Acts Congressional spending bills specifically forbade the Federal government from spending any resources on going after these hemp growers under the laws that normally apply to hemp and all forms of cannabis under the War On Drugs.
Currently, according to the pro-hemp lobbyists at Vote Hemp , 33 states have hemp growing programs under the protections provided by the Farm Bill. Although CBD consumers have been safe from legal problems so far, CBD vendors have faced legal threats and even occasional police raids.
The Industrial Hemp Farming Act of would separate industrial hemp from psychoactive cannabis, officially removing the agricultural crop from classification as an illegal drug under the Controlled Substances Act. State agriculture departments would largely be free to regulate hemp just like they do potatoes, wheat, or any other crop.
Based on conversations between Native Americans and lawmakers, tribal nations are now also explicitly included in hemp legalization. With the Industrial Hemp Act, State agriculture departments would largely be free to regulate hemp just like they do potatoes, wheat, or any other crop. As we previously reported on Ministry of Hemp, while hemp has bipartisan support with politicians from across the United States, support for hemp is especially strong in tobacco country.
James Comer, with support from Kentucky Reps. In all, the bill has 16 cosponsors, including 9 Democrats and 7 Republicans. They may have their work cut out for them. In return for allowing the bill to pass out of the House Judiciary Committee a crucial step the bill must pass through before being, eventually, voted on by the entire House , Rep.
Steenstra explained that these inspections are usually reserved for pharmaceutical manufacturers and doctors or hospitals that deal in controlled substances like opiate drugs.
In any case, with many stages to go before the Industrial Hemp Farming Act potentially becomes law, Ryan hopes these clauses will be corrected. Currently, industrial hemp must have less than. This cut-off is strictly enforced by the U. By contrast, in the U. In Canada if a hemp crop has THC levels over.
Flawed But Promising, Could The Industrial Hemp Farming Act Be The Key To Hemp’s Future?
remains an illegal crop under both federal' and state6 law Furthermore, it is. * The topic Kentucky's tobacco farmers about their future, see Tobacco Blues (Caf6 Sisters. Productions allow the cultivation of industrial hemp in Kentucky It begins with a . But see DEMPSEY, supra note 15, at 58 (stating that the male plants. Struggling farmers need more options, and hemp offers a promising The latest is New Jersey, which recently passed a law allowing farmers to grow industrial hemp. That's understandable, but how can you justify allowing farmers to The key to producing hemp, though, is making sure the levels of. Industrial hemp can only be grown in New Zealand under licence from the Ministry of Health. The key issue restricting hemp's resurgence is its relationship with U.S. government's Marijuana Tax Act which placed all hemp production under percentage of THC important in determining C. sativa value as a drug but also.