COLORADO: There has been encouraging news on the hemp front. Rep. Jared Polis and a few bipartisan representatives got a provision passed into the FARM bill last year that allows colleges, universities and state departments of agriculture to grow test plots of hemp for industrial uses. Twelve states — California, Colorado, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oregon, Utah, Vermont and West Virginia — now have laws to provide for hemp production without federal approval.
These are positive first steps in returning a multi-billion dollar industrial agriculture industry to the United States after 70 years in the grip of THC insanity among American politicians and policy makers. No matter that hemp hasn’t, nor ever will, get anyone high, it is still officially classified as a Schedule 1 drug, more dangerous even than methamphetamine and cocaine.
The enthusiasm to end this bullshit forever and bring hemp into the 21st century is growing locally, too. A University of Colorado team under the leadership of professor Nolan Kane of the ecology and evolutionary biology department is working to develop a genetic map of the cannabis genus.