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The Establishments war on Donald Trump
See other The Establishments war on Donald Trump Articles

Title: Mitch McConnell introduces Hemp Farming Act of 2018
Source: High Plains Journal
URL Source: http://www.hpj.com/ag_news/mitch-mc ... 1f-11e8-b9a7-fb51506215b3.html
Published: Apr 13, 2018
Author: N/A
Post Date: 2018-04-13 11:15:43 by Willie Green
Keywords: None
Views: 93
Comments: 1

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's crusade for hemp has hit another milestone.

On April 12, the Kentucky Republican, along with Sens. Ron Wyden, D-OR, and Jeff Merkley, D-OR, introduced the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, which would legalize and clearly define hemp as an agricultural commodity and remove it from the list of controlled substances.

The legislation will also give states the opportunity to become the primary regulators of hemp and allow hemp researchers to apply for competitive federal grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Hemp farmers also would be eligible for crop insurance.

“During the recent state work period, I talked to a number of farmers, manufacturers and small business owners who expressed enthusiasm for hemp’s potential, and I was proud to stand with Kentucky’s Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles to announce the impending introduction of this bill,” McConnell said. “Today, with my colleagues, I am proud to introduce the bipartisan Hemp Farming Act of 2018, which will build upon the success of the hemp pilot programs and spur innovation and growth within the industry. By legalizing hemp and empowering states to conduct their own oversight plans, we can give the hemp industry the tools necessary to create jobs and new opportunities for farmers and manufacturers around the county.”

Sen. Wyden added it was past time for an amnesty on hemp.

 “Hemp products are made in this country, sold in this country and consumed in this country. Sen. McConnell, our colleagues and I are going to keep pushing to make sure that if Americans can buy hemp products at the local supermarket, American farmers can grow hemp in this country.”

Hemp was once a cash crop for many states, including Kentucky. But, hemp was doomed by the “Marihuana Tax Act of 1937,” which defined hemp as a narcotic drug, according to the Congressional Research Service.

Farmers growing hemp were required to have federal registration and a special tax stamp, effectively limiting further production.

During World War II, the U.S. Department of Agriculture campaigned with “Hemp for Victory” and allowed farmers to grow it with a permit.

Yet, by 1958, there were no U.S. hemp fields. Rigid restrictions in the Controlled Substances Act brought the industry to a halt, turning the United States into one of the world’s largest importers of hemp.

The hemp act builds upon the past successful bipartisan efforts by the three senators. They supported a provision 2014 farm bill that allowed states, through research institutions and departments of agriculture, to grow industrial hemp.

About three-quarters of U.S. states have enacted such laws, but there remain barriers. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration still considers the crop as the equivalent of marijuana and classifies it as an illegal substance.

Current U.S. hemp sales total more than $600 million, according to the congressional report. That figure is based on imported hemp, primarily from Canada. 

McConnell announced in late March is plans to introduce legislation. His state is one of the leaders in hemp production.

“If we’re selling hemp products in the United States, we should be growing hemp in the United States,” Sen. Merkley said. “It’s good for jobs, good for our communities, and it’s just common sense.”

Congressman James Comer, R-KY, will introduce the companion version in the House of Representatives.


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#1. To: Willie Green (#0)

McConnell announced in late March is plans to introduce legislation. His state is one of the leaders in hemp production.

Yeah. At 17,000 acres, a real powerhouse state.

misterwhite  posted on  2018-04-13   13:23:44 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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