Hemp

Vermont: First Ever Vermont Hemp Festival to be Held at Burke Mountain on Sept 9

Vermont Hemp Festival

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

The first-ever Vermont Hemp Festival is planned for Sept. 9 at Burke Mountain Resort in rural, remote Northeast Kingdom. Eli Harrington and Monica Donovan, co-founders of Heady Vermont, chose to have their inaugural hemp conference in the because Northeast Kingdom has hemp history.

Harrington said, “Heady Vermont covers everything from statehouse happenings to artists to investigative reporting and the identities of the individuals who are changing the face of Vermont’s cannabis culture.”

Florida: Universities Set to Begin Researching Industrial Hemp

Industrial Hemp

The University of Florida and Florida A&M University both qualified to spearhead the state's pilot hemp project

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

Florida farmers are looking for an alternative cash crop, with citrus production down. A new law, SB 1726, signed by Gov. Rick Scott on Friday gives universities in the state with a college of agriculture permission to research hemp.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Bill Montford, D-Tallahassee, with a companion bill sponsored by Rep. Dr. Ralph Massullo, R-Beverly Hills, allows for universities to develop pilot projects to cultivate, process, test, research, create and market safe commercial applications for industrial hemp.

Illinois: Industrial Hemp May Become State's Newest Cash Crop

Hemp Field, 2009

Illinois farmers may soon be able to add hemp to their rotation

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

SB 1294, an industrial hemp bill sponsored by Sen. Toi Hutchinson, D-Olympia Fields, which passed unanimously in the Illinois Senate, would allow the Illinois Department of Agriculture to license farmers to grow industrial hemp.

Kentucky: Hemp Grown In Commonwealth Used As Insulation In Lexington Housing Project

Kentucky Hemp Insulation

Kentucky's first hemp crop was grown in 1775, and Kentucky went on to become the nation's leading hemp-producing state in the mid-19th century with peak production of 40,000 tons in 1850

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

This weekend, to commemorate Hemp History Week, a two day "Building with Hemp" workshop brought community members together in Lexington, Kentucky to begin insulating a house with Kentucky-grown hemp. Kris Nonn, a construction director at North Limestone Community Development Corporation who organized the workshop, believes it is important to understand “how something that grows really well here can be used for construction.”

Pennsylvania: Industrial Hemp Plot Planted In Perry County, Harvest To Be Cattle Feed

Perry County Hemp

From 1681 until around 1840 the culture of hemp was nearly universal in Pennsylvania

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

On Tuesday, an industrial hemp research plot was planted in Perry County, Pennsylvania. If successful, the seeds should germinate in about a week and mature in 100 days.

Kentucky: Officials Burn Commercial Hemp With Too Much THC

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Kentucky agriculture officials say the hemp destroyed Thursday for containing too much of the psychoactive compound THC was a fraction of the hemp crop being grown in the state.

The state agriculture department says the THC level exceeded 0.3 percent, which is more than the legal limit set by Congress.

THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the compound that gives marijuana users a high.

Hemp and marijuana are the same species, but hemp usually has a very small amount of THC.

Lyndsey Todd grew the hemp in greenhouses in Pulaski County. Todd cultivated most of the hemp so it could be turned into medicine. Todd says her product is not psychoactive and that the 0.3 percent THC limit is an "unrealistic number."

Brent Burchett, director of plant marketing for the state agriculture department, says the state was bound by law to destroy the 100 pounds (45 kilograms) in question because four separate tests concluded its THC level exceeded 0.3 percent, the limit set by Congress and followed by the state.

West Virginia: Amendment To Bill Would Legalize Hemp-Derived CBD In The State

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Lawmakers in West Virginia have explained language in a bill that would add substances to the drug schedule that would allow the sale, distribution, and prescription of hemp-derived CBD oils, according to a Herald-Dispatch report. The amendment differentiates between CBD products derived from hemp and CBD derived from marijuana plants containing more than the .3 percent THC allowable under federal law.

The changes were made by the Senate Judiciary Committee after the Director of the West Virginia Hemp Industries Association Morgan Leach said the original version would cause confusion regarding CBD.

Leach said that making the “cash crop” available will help the state become “a catalyst for entrepreneurship and innovation.”

“This revision protects West Virginia hemp farmers’ ability to cultivate and process hemp for CBD. This is one of our biggest revenue streams that will help make our farmers more money as they begin to develop this crop in West Virginia,” Leach said in the report. “Our goals are to (build) industries around food products, dietary supplements, cosmetics and topicals, paper, textiles, bio-plastics, advanced battery technologies and much more.”

The measure has been sent to the Senate with a recommendation to pass it.

Canada: Broadcasters Deny Cannabis And Hemp Expo Ads

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Some of Canada’s largest television broadcasters have denied ad buys by the Cannabis and Hemp Expo scheduled to take place in Calgary, Ontario in May, CTV News Calgary reports. Bell Media, owner of CTV, and Rogers Communications rejected the ads due to laws that outlaw cannabis advertising in Canada. The logo for the expo also contains a hemp leaf and the word “cannabis.”

“CTV attempted to work with the client to ensure their creative conformed with statutes pertaining to promoting directly or indirectly the sale or disposal of a drug…however the client chose not to move forward with the campaign,” Bell Media said in a statement.

Terra Connors, a representative for Canwest Production, sponsor of the event, said there won’t be any actual cannabis at the expo but it counts licensed producers, dispensaries, and headshops among the exhibitors.

“We understand to a point. I mean, nobody wants to portray illegal activity or anything but that’s not the case,” Connors said in the report. “We’re a legitimate business, promoting a legitimate trade show and we are not doing anything illegal.”

Broadcasters who break the cannabis advertising laws could be fined between $250,000 and $5 million.

New Mexico: Governor Vetoes Industrial Hemp Bill

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Susana Martinez, Governor of New Mexico, has vetoed a bill that would have created a research program for industrial hemp.

The Democrat-sponsored bill was vetoed by the second-term Republican governor on Wednesday without comment.

The bill would have required the New Mexico Department of Agriculture to set up an industrial hemp research program for cultivation and marketing.

Democratic Sen. Cisco McSorley of Albuquerque has authored a more restrictive bill which is on its way to the governor's desk right now. McSorley says it addresses concerns raised by Martinez two years ago about potential conflicts with federal law and provides for police training.

Thirty-one states have authorized hemp research. The 2014 federal farm bill allows state agriculture departments to designate hemp projects for research and development.

Rhode Island: Growing Hemp Becomes Legal

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A new law takes effect Sunday that will allow people in Rhode Island to obtain a license to grow hemp for oil, clothing, fiber, food, and other commercial products.

Lawmakers proposed the bill initially to allow members of the Narragansett Indian Tribe to cultivate hemp, but the language was expanded to include any licensed grower.

Gov. Gina Raimondo signed the legislation into law in July. It also allows universities to grow hemp for research and educational purposes.

Industrial hemp is a cousin of marijuana that contains a lower concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Although the United States imports about half a billion dollars of hemp annually from other countries, mainly Canada and China, the plant remains illegal for most of its own farmers to grow.

New Hampshire: Republican Lawmakers Pre-file Bill To Legalize Hemp

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Republican lawmakers have pre-filed a bill to legalize hemp for the 2017 legislative session in New Hampshire. The legislature will discuss the bill next month when it reconvenes.

The proposed law, House Bill 51, would remove hemp from the state's Controlled Drug Act, allowing it to be treated like any other agricultural commodity. The proposal was filed by State Representatives Daniel Itse, J.R. Hoell, and James Spillane; it also has the support of Senators Harold French and John Reagan.

The House Committee on Environment and Agriculture will need to pass the bill by March 3rd before it can move to a vote in the full House of Representatives. If passed by the committee and the House, the bill will then go to the Senate. If the Senate passes the bill it goes before Governor Maggie Hassan for final approval.

The United States currently imports about a half billion dollars annually from other countries, mainly Canada and China, while the plant remains illegal for its own farmers to cultivate.

According to a poll released earlier this year, 61% of voters in New Hampshire support legalizing marijuana for all purposes, not just hemp or medical; just 24% oppose the move.

China: Hemp-seed Eating Village Has Oldest, Healthiest People In The World

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Bama Yao is a village in China that can boast that its citizens live to be far older than the global average and suffer from few health problems. Scientists believe the secret is in their diet, which includes lots of hemp seed.

It's true that Bama Yao has very clean air and water, and their diet doesn't include the fat, animal proteins, salt, and sugar that are so common in the American diet. But many experts believe the villagers' consumption of a superfood high in essential fatty acids (omega 3 and 6) is the secret to their longevity, and their primary source of receiving these fatty acids is through a diet rich in hemp seed.

Life expectancy in Bama Yao is well over 100 years. Its inhabitants have a mostly plant-based diet and typically exercise moderately on a daily basis. Hemp seed, which makes up a major portion of their diet, contain omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, which contribute to a healthy brain. Hemp seed are also rich in calcium, iron, vitamins A, E, D, many B vitamins, and dietary fiber. The fiber in hemp seed helps to prevent overeating by making a person feel more full.

Canada: Restrictions On Hemp Are Eased

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Newly-elected Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made marijuana legalization a campaign promise, and is slowly working towards fulfilling that promise. Health Canada has announced that it has made the process simpler for people to be permitted to grow hemp, marijuana's non-psychoactive cousin, in the country.

The cultivation of industrial hemp has been exempted from the nation’s Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. The minimum acreage requirement has been removed as part of that change, allowing hemp to be grown in even very small fields.

Health Canada says the move “better aligns regulation of industrial hemp with the demonstrated low public health and safety risk of the crop.”

Changes being made are listed here:

--Planning sites no longer will need to be pre-approved, and applicants will no longer need to submit GPS and map coordinates.

--One hemp license will cover all cultivation sites, removing the requirement of obtaining multiple licenses for multiple crops.

--THC testing is no longer required for those growing hemp for grain and fiber.

--Applications will be accepted via e-mail, rather than exclusively in-person.

Virginia: First Hemp Crop Harvested In Decades

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Virginia is harvesting its first hemp crop grown since the plant was banned 70 years ago.

“People think it was tobacco that started this colony, but it was also hemp,” Jason Amatucci, founder and executive director of the Virginia Industrial Hemp Coalition explained to the Richmond Times.

Virginia farmers were actually required to grow hemp during the Colonial Era, some of which was used to provide fiber for the Royal Navy's rope, according to Republican Delegate Joseph R. Yost, a sponsor of Virginia’s hemp research bill. “It’s funny that we had to pass legalization just to do research,” Yost said.

Virginia, along with 30 other states, began establishing hemp research programs after Congress passed the farm bill in 2014, allowing the Virginia Department of Agriculture to license farmers to grow industrial hemp for research purposes.

“It seemed far-fetched to me,” Yost admitted, “But the more research and study you do about it, the more you see the possibilities.” Yost is a proponent for the economic-boosting potential of industrial hemp, especially in states hurt by the loss of jobs in the dying tobacco industry.

Vermont: Thieves Mistaking Hemp For Pot

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Vermont State Police say three men stole hemp from a farm in Shaftsbury because they thought it was pot.

Troopers responded to a suspicious vehicle complaint in Shaftsbury and found Leon Lovelace, 21, Brett Stone, 24, and Cody Smith, 20, all of Hoosick Falls, New York. The three men had plants that looked like marijuana; they were cited for possession and released.

A follow-up investigation revealed that two of the men had given false names, and that the plants were in fact hemp, not pot.

Police say the hemp was stolen from a farm in Shaftsbury. They also say that farm has had a lot of plants stolen recently because people think it is marijuana.

The suspects still face charges for theft and providing false names to police.

Kentucky: Agriculture Commissioner Objects To USDA Rules On Industrial Hemp

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Kentucky's Agriculture Commissioner is asking the United States Department of Agriculture to reconsider its latest set of rules regarding industrial hemp.

A provision in the 2014 Farm Bill allowed states to grow hemp for research purposes, but did not remove the marijuana-related plant from the controlled substances list, giving federal agencies authority over restrictions.

Ryan Quarles said last month that he would be reviewing the USDA's 'Statement of Principles' to see how it relates to Kentucky's own pilot hemp research program.

Quarles sent a letter yesterday to the USDA, saying he now has several objections in that several aspects of the principles contradict Congress' original intent and "could hinder industrial hemp's economic potential" in Kentucky.

Quarles says the new rules name the only economically viable parts of the hemp plant as the "fiber and seed" to only be used for industrial applications. Quarles says that over half of Kentucky's hemp acreage harvests cannabidiol - a hemp oil that comes from neither the fiber or seed, and that the 'industrial application' provision would also mean hemp could not be used in a drug, as a food ingredient or for artistic purposes.

He also takes issue with the USDA’s declaration that hemp seeds and plants may not be transported across state lines.

New York: Eaton Farm First To Plant Hemp Seeds

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Dan Dolgin and Mark Justh planted 30 acres of hemp near Eaton, New York in July under a research license from Morrisville State College. They are expecting their first harvest next month.

"It's not only the first legal hemp grown in New York State, but the first legal hemp to be grown here in 80 years," Dolgin said.

They say their biggest hurdle is proving to people that hemp is not marijuana and won't "get you high".

"Looking at this you might not be able to tell the difference between the two, but they have very different end uses and are grown very differently," said Dolgin.

"This is an agricultural crop. It has nothing to do with marijuana and I think it's important for people to understand that," Mark Justh said.

Hemp is used in textiles, building materials, and food.

"It's got all the omega 3's and 6's. It's probably the best vegan alternative to fish oil so we're excited about the nutritional components as much as we are the industrial components," said Dolgin.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates the annual hemp sales to be almost $600 million, but all of that money is being spent outside the U.S. presently.

Dan and Mark expect a high yield at harvest next month. "We expect to get 800 pounds per acre off of this," Justh said.

They hope that hemp will soon benefit farmers all over the state.

Tennessee: Hemp Maze Opens Near Nashville Next Week

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

An hour south of Nashville there is a hemp maze opening to the public next week.

The Tennessee Hemp Industries Association is giving you the opportunity to meander through a tall, waving industrial hemp forest in Chapel Hill every Saturday and Sunday from Aug. 20 through Sept. 11.

Industrial hemp is a member of the Cannabis Sativa l species and is the non-psychoactive cousin of marijuana.

The public will be allowed to walk through and admire the maze, but TNHIA has one rule: no touching. TNHIA says that Tennessee state law forbids any plant material to be taken from the field without a designated license of the state’s agricultural pilot program.

The hemp maze event will serve as “an agritourism study in partnership with the crop’s farmers, landowners and the Tennessee Hemp Industries Association,” according to TNHIA.

Founded in 2013, Tennessee Hemp Industries Association is a non-profit aimed at providing “support to state hemp farmers and businesses in the interest of developing a successful state hemp industry,” according to TNHIA.

The educational event takes place 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday from Aug. 20 through Sept. 11.

Global: Hemp Fiberboard Could Replace Plywood

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Hemp is one of the major cash crops that America was built on, and was used for fiber and other materials extensively until Reefer Madness ended it. Now that hemp is making a comeback in the U.S., new product possibilities continue to increase, and one of the latest is hemp fiberboard, which could replace plywood as a major building material source.

Whereas trees take years to grow, and because deforestation is a major ecological issue now, hemp could prove to be a much better option. Hemp grows in four or five months, and can produce a lot more volume-wise on growing acreage than trees can.

One acre of hemp can produce up to 5,300 pounds of straw, which can be turned into 1,300 pounds of wood fiber. The boards can also be fire and water resistant if they are treated in the right way, and they can provide good insulation from temperature extremes.

Since hemp grows so quickly, it would be an affordable alternative to plywood. According to davidwolfe.com, hemp fiberboard could replace traditional plywood within a few years.

Kentucky: Hemp Dog To Join Food Roster At State Fair

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

One of the best things about going to your local state fair is the food: funnel cakes, cotton candy, turkey legs, and candy apples. But the Kentucky State Fair is offering a new twist on an old favorite - the Kentucky Hemp Dog.

The Kentucky Hemp Dog was invented to help support local beef sales for the state, and will be available for a limited time: only at the state fair that runs in Louisville from August 18-28.

“People have really been fussing the last two or three years that we can’t get local beef into the Kentucky State Fair. We really want to do a Kentucky Hemp Dog to get the buzz where people will try it,” local cattle farmer David Neville said.

Neville created the hemp dog, which contains a three percent hemp protein content that acts as the glue to bind the meat together. He throws in some hemp hearts and a small amount of hemp oil for flavor.

Hot dogs are generally considered to be an unhealthy, processed meat food item, bit the addition of multiple sources of hemp does help contribute to the Omega 3 and Omega 6 healthy fats. Bonus protein content coming from the hemp powder makes this one of the healthiest beef-based hot dogs.

Anyone can try a Kentucky Hemp Dog at the Henry County Harvest Showcase.

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