DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: “It’s a historic day in America for the hemp industry”, said Geoff Whaling, Chairman of the National Hemp Association. “Senators McConnell, Wyden, Paul and Merkley have introduced a bi-partisan Senate Bill that not only raises awareness about the potential of this crop, it puts our industry in a position to meet its full potential”.
After months of work with Congress, the Hemp Farming Act of 2018 was introduced on the floor of the U.S. Senate this morning. The Bill accurately addresses the challenges that State Departments of Agriculture, Institutes of Higher Learning, Researchers and Farmers have had in the implementation of the provisions of Section 7606 of the 2014 Farm Bill.
The Hemp Farming Act identifies hemp as a crop and gives this commodity all of the benefits that are now available to other grains under USDA. The Bill removes hemp from the controlled substance act, which will allow farmers and manufacturers to freely sell all goods and products produced from the hemp crop, across state lines with no fear of challenges imposed by the DEA or banking institutions. The Bill also identifies hemp as both food and feed and will provide farmers interested in growing the crop the same crop insurance afforded other commodities crops.
“The United States is the largest importing nation of industrial hemp products in the world and the only importing nation not to have a national policy. That translates into millions of dollars of products coming into the united States and we think those jobs and opportunities should be here for our farmers and manufacturers. The Hemp Farming Act changes all of that”, said Whaling.
36 states have adopted legislation to begin researching hemp, a provision provided via the 2014 Farm Bill. Under the Hemp Farming Act, USDA will work with States to develop regulations.
“We applauded Senator McConnell, Wyden, Paul and Merkley for their leadership on this bi-partisan issue and look forward to working with all Senators so to pass this Bill this session.”