Billions of Wild Drug-Free Hemp Plants Eradicated 

  Billions of Wild Drug-Free Hemp Plants Eradicated 

Posted by CN Staff on December 26, 2006 at 10:59:50 PT
Press Release  
Source: PRNewswire 

Washington, DC -- According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's (DEA) data it has funded the destruction of 4.7 billion non-psychoactive industrial hemp plants also called "ditchweed" since 1984. This massive annual eradication effort stands in sharp contrast to farmers across the globe that continue to legally produce industrial hemp for export to the United States.
According to data collected by the DEA's Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program (DCE/SP) 218.6 million ditchweed plants were eradicated in 2005 versus only 4.2 million marijuana plants nationwide. This means that 98.1% of all cannabis plants eradicated in 2005 were actually the non-drug variety of cannabis otherwise known as industrial hemp. Although the ditchweed is primarily being eradicated in mid-western states where it was once grown to support WW II efforts with the encouragement of the government, these plants would have little or no psychoactive effect on people who might smoke them because they contain very low levels of THC, the drug component in marijuana. Furthermore, George Weiblen, a researcher at the University of Minnesota showed that marijuana and industrial hemp have distinct and non- overlapping DNA fingerprints. He published his findings in the March 2006 issue (volume 51, No. 2) of the Journal of Forensic Science.The massive ditchweed eradication has cost federal and state governments at least $175 million since 1984, the earliest year data is available on ditchweed. DEA spent $11 Million in 2005 on DCE/SP grants to state police alone."It's Orwellian that the biggest target of the DEA's Eradication Program is actually not a drug but instead a useful plant for everything from food, clothing and even auto parts and currently must be imported to supply a $270 million industry," says Eric Steenstra, President of Vote Hemp. "While Vote Hemp has urged the DEA to recognize the difference between hemp and marijuana so farmers could grow it here, the federal agency is spending millions of dollars to destroy hundreds of millions of harmless hemp plants."How the DEA collects their own data on ditchweed, which is sometimes referred to as feral hemp is puzzling because officials at the DEA regularly state there is no difference between hemp and marijuana. Nevertheless, their own statistics clearly differentiate between ditchweed and "cultivated marijuana" plants that are destroyed. Other questions loom over exactly what is happening to all these plants once they are eradicated."Much of the ditchweed eradicated is believed to be burned, turning a carbon consuming plant into a contributor of Greenhouse gasses," says Tom Murphy, Vote Hemp National Outreach Coordinator. "For all the effort to find and destroy these harmless wild hemp plants they are coming back year after year. It is likely that the eradication programs help re-seed the locations were "ditchweed" is found. The late summer timing and removal method causes countless ripe seeds to fall to the ground where they will sprout again the following year."A nationwide leader, Indiana has eradicated, on average, 65 million wild hemp plants per year from 1984 through 2005, compared to the eradication of 114,699 cultivated marijuana plants annually in the same time period. Marijuana eradication requires that state police work overtime during the summer and required nearly 31,000 hours of officer's time in each of 2003 and 2004, for example, and accounted for 8.9% of the criminal related hours for the state police during those years. Ironically, FlexForm, an Indiana manufacturer whose hemp-content materials are found in an estimated 3 million vehicles in North America today uses approximately 250,000 pounds of hemp fiber per year must import industrial hemp from Canada and Europe. The company says industrial hemp could easily take a greater share of the 4 million pounds of natural fiber it uses yearly, as "hemp fiber possesses physical properties beneficial to our natural fiber based composites." In addition, FlexForm says it would "gladly expand our domestic purchases.""The potential value of legal industrial hemp in rural economic development should be targeted for investment by the Department of Agriculture," says Dr. Jon Gettman, a researcher in Public Policy and author of a new comprehensive report that highlighted that marijuana valued at $35.8 billion is America's number one cash crop. "The multiple uses of industrial hemp in manufacturing and product innovation worldwide are consistent with current US agricultural policies and a natural fit into many local economies around the nation."Numerous states are working to allow farmers to grow industrial hemp. Starting in January North Dakota will accept applications from farmers to grow hemp. The race is on to bring the crop back due to increasing evidence hemp foods are becoming very popular. Sales of hemp foods in 2004/2005 grew by 50% over the previous 12-month period. U.S. retail sales of hemp products are estimated to now be $250 to $300 million per year. European farmers now grow more than 40,000 acres and Canadian farmers grew more than 50,000 acres in 2006. Complete Title: Billions of Wild Drug-Free Hemp Plants Eradicated by DEA in Effort to Confiscate Cultivated Marijuana Since 1984, Says Vote HempSource: PRNewswire (Wire) Published: December 26, 2006Copyright 2006 PRNewswire Website: Contact: Vote Hemp Hemp Archives

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Comment #27 posted by dongenero on June 02, 2010 at 12:23:25 PT
DEA's eradication program
Basically, it's senseless, subsidized employment for these DEA "workers".A better and more useful idea would be to have them cleaning up all the roadside garbage rather than digging up roadside industrial hemp.At least taxpayers would be getting a useful service for their money and DEA agents could stay employed.
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Comment #26 posted by museman on December 27, 2006 at 11:56:15 PT
Well, the prejudice of various groups towards other groups as a means to justify the government -and give it support- seems fairly valid, except that we're talking about a certain kind of ignorance, an 'uninformed' ignorance, an unintelligent ignorance which is understandably fostered by both politicians and religious organizations. In my experience I know that the scenario is an invention that goes way back. People are profiled and placed in the positions which best suit the staus quo; for example cops are almost always militarily trained, and have that mindset - like civilian death in an operation (whether the op is successful or a huge mistake, it matters not) is considered 'acceptable collateral damage.'The prejudices and bigotries being represented and used by the powers that be to draw lines, and build walls, are I submit, only the ones of the social elite, and their chosen servants. A poor mans attitudes, even of prejudice and bigotry (not a common attribute of the poor) is not considered worth consideration, thus we have prisons for such things.The culpability of our leaders rests collectively in every citizens hands, but so many of those hands are tied by the economic system of empowerment and dis-empowerment that to have money or to not have money is the deciding factor in the actual abilty to influence power, one way or another.The root cause of system failure, in my mind and experience remains the same, greed, and propriety - the false values of the rich.
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Comment #25 posted by afterburner on December 27, 2006 at 05:33:46 PT
Meanwhile, the Canadian Hemp Industry Rolls On
Canada: Hemp Grows With Technological Advances, Business Edge, (22 Dec 2006)
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Comment #24 posted by FoM on December 26, 2006 at 21:16:28 PT
Thank you and now I understand.
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Comment #23 posted by afterburner on December 26, 2006 at 20:59:16 PT
FoM #8
"Happy Boxing Day! What in the world is that? LOL!"Boxing Day - An English TraditionBoxing Day - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia'm still learning about it meself 
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Comment #22 posted by ekim on December 26, 2006 at 19:54:30 PT
If you go to DC get Howard to be with you
having a ex-leo and member of Leap at your side --- what do you think increases your odds at being heard/keep thinking good thoughtsComment #21 posted by ekim on December 24, 2006 at 20:08:37 PT 
thank you Howard and the best to all----- 
Newsletter December 22, 2006
Life has settled into a routine for me. I call and book appointments, scheduling 5-6 or so a day. The 7:10 train takes me to Union Station and a brisk 1 mile walk later, I am ‘at work.’ Still, I never fail to take a good glimpse of the Capitol Dome as I leave the train station and I always glance over at the massive pillars of the Supreme Court building on my morning walk. Such things reminds of the seriousness of my mission.A staffer this week agreed that Walter Cronkite’s idea was excellent; namely, to have a national, blue ribbon commission to study the entire policy of prohibition. She did challenge me to find a way of naming such a body so as not to scare all the soccer moms and dads. So, how do we? Framing an issue (drug prohibition, not war on drugs, etc), creating a non-threatening name for a commission makes sense and would make it easier for our leaders to sign on to such a study. If you have a brain burp on this, please let me know. Challenge your friends. “National Commission on Drug Policy” or “Drug Policy Study Group” or your idea here___________This week I switched to the Senate, where I will stay until I have met w/ all the staffers whose Senators are on the judiciary and appropriations committee. Their newest of 3 office buildings, The Hart, is close to palatial. In the main corridors there is no dry wall (sheetrock) only marble. Even the handrails of stairwell are marble. Yikes! My tax money. Now I know why Congressman want to grow up to be a Senator.If you visit DC, I would be happy to accompany you to your federal offices. Constituents go to the head of any line. You would find it a learning often positive experience, even when the aide indicates sharp disagreement. You will walk away knowing how/what it takes to change a politician’s mind and vote. No need for your Sunday best, just clean street clothes are fine.Since I started a year ago, I have visited 170 offices out of 540. I believe I can visit all the rest in 2007.The offices are mostly empty during the week between Christmas and New Years. So, no newsletter next week. I will spend the week working on a new section of the LEAP website, translating material into German, French and Spanish. Wishing you and yours the best in 2007. howardOfficer Howard J. Wooldridge (retired) Education Specialist, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition ( Washington, DC Hablo espanol, je parle francais, Deutsch auchHoward J. Wooldridge 1402 W. 7th Street Frederick, MD 21702 301-695-1739 817-975-1110 (cell) wooldridge leap.ccThe mission of LEAP is to reduce the multitude of unintended harmful consequences resulting from fighting the war on drugs and to lessen the incidence of death, disease, crime, and addiction by ultimately ending drug prohibition. 
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Comment #21 posted by Hope on December 26, 2006 at 18:23:42 PT
Museman...comment 7
"Why so few people in this country actually question the motives of their 'elected representatives' is beyond my abilty to fathom, most specially when those claim to be upholding all the high and mighty ideals of 'democracy' and 'freedom.'"Museman, you might find the answer, or at least a part of it here: tip to Pete and his DrugWarRant.
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Comment #20 posted by Toker00 on December 26, 2006 at 18:01:17 PT
Shucks, gw. Thanks.Am I too early to be trumpeting the battle cry?Are our side not ready?Are our side not ever going to be ready?We can talk the talk, can we walk the walk?Will we take the Truth and use it?Or forsake the Truth and lose it?Toke. 
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Comment #19 posted by global_warming on December 26, 2006 at 17:18:55 PT
hey toke
your words have been a comfortknowing you are out there somewheregives me great thanksgiving
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Comment #18 posted by FoM on December 26, 2006 at 17:11:40 PT
I don't know how our country became like it is now. Commercials all the time on the tv and it is really hard to handle. It's like owning and buying things is necessary but it really isn't important. 
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Comment #17 posted by global_warming on December 26, 2006 at 17:09:11 PT
i am surprised
toker000, is looking for the Kapt...we can argue which is the front of a jointwhile our children march off to warman you ought to see her go
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Comment #16 posted by global_warming on December 26, 2006 at 16:47:10 PT
re: living in a cage
this is cell block 6 sayingHappy New Year
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Comment #15 posted by HempWorld on December 26, 2006 at 16:27:23 PT
A Billion here a Billion there, who cares?
Hey happy holidaze everyone! I am rearing my ugly (and dirty) keyboard again. I am from a very small country, the Netherlands. This country cannot afford to waste as much money as the US and many things that are legal in the US are illegal in the Netherlands such as campaign contributions to politial parties and candidates. On the other hand, things are legal (or tolerated) in the Netherlands that are illegal in the US, such as; pot smoking and selling pot in the 'coffeeshops.' Oh, my, can you imagine? Is it a coincidence that one is legal in one and not in the other? Is there a correlation? USA is a very large commercial market and all the (huge) stakes are dealt in Washington but only for those who can afford to lobby. With stakes so huge, much money remains to 'grease the wheels.' Then on top of that there is a vicious circle of the Police and DEA who are always looking for ways to increase their budget. We can clearly see the result of the above in the US today, just read the papers or more importantly, Judging from the war in Iraq (to 'free' them) things can go on forever. US taxpayer base is an unlimited source of funding for the powers that be in Washington. This system is broken to the core and needs to be redone completely unless you accept the status quo and are ready to live in a cage.
Nobody Can Stop This!
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Comment #14 posted by Toker00 on December 26, 2006 at 16:09:13 PT
It's time to Skewer Cannabis Prohibition!
"The other thing: I'm an ostracized figure, folks. People treat me as if I were a criminal. There are about 72,000 laws on the books, folks. If I break one law and obey all the others, I'm a criminal? You mean I should quit pot and cheat on my wife because the latter is LEGAL?"I'm down with this statement. Millions of us should be. It's only Immoral if you threaten to interrupt Big Pharma/Alco/Cotton/Chemi-Profit. "Otherwise, buy all the smutzines, porno, alcohol, legal drugs you want, we'll make more!"Rchandor, and all others who have been victimized by the Unjustifiable laws of Cannabis Prohibition, stand up! It's time to clear our names and our consciences! It's time to take our Freedom back to make decisions about our Bodies and our Health. It's time to tell the rest of Society that Time's Up! We have awakened to the Rule Of Lies, Reject it, and demand the Truth! Who will lead the Cannabists in this War of Prohibigeddon? Kucinich? Or will we walk out on our own, and be the Leaders instead of the Enslaved? One person can't do it, and NO ONE can do it FOR us! We have to make a presence at least as powerful as the supporters of illegal immigrants! While I don't agree that ANYONE should be considered illegal, I am talking about their solidarity and courage to take it to the STREETS! Who will be OUR "V"?!? Slicing with the double edged sword of Truth! Kapt., you available?!?Wage Truth on Lies! END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW!   
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on December 26, 2006 at 15:25:15 PT
Thank you. I really mean what I say because it has been embedded in my head since I was very young. 
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Comment #12 posted by rchandar on December 26, 2006 at 14:43:13 PT:
Is there some ostensible purpose to eradicating hemp plants? I thought that hemp was the male plant and contained almost no THC. It's not psychoactive, it's a plant that's useful in making clothes and rope.I don't get it. Am I going to get high off of hemp, or am I going to look like an advocate of M********* simply because? From time to time, I've seen these plants on the side of highway roads. They're no threat. I don't get it, and I hope I don't get it in the future.
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Comment #11 posted by rchandar on December 26, 2006 at 14:39:47 PT:
You're like a long lost friend. In this world, it's great that someone like you understands. 
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Comment #10 posted by rchandar on December 26, 2006 at 14:37:56 PT:
You got that one right on the money! Freedom in America is simply freedom to purchase products. I'll volunteer one more comment. Two, actually. The first one: with respect to pot smoking or anything else related to that. One time, I was teaching a class and this subject came up. A student, elderly, suggested that pot induces violence. So I asked, "you mean, if I smoke pot, I will kill, rob, or maim?" She said: "you might."So that's like saying: the fact that you MIGHT commit a crime means that you must be treated as if you WILL commit the crime? Fallacious as hell, sorry I still don't see the point of it. I always thought the maxim in the US was: "you're innocent until proven guilty." Guess it's really the other way around.The other thing: I'm an ostracized figure, folks. People treat me as if I were a criminal. There are about 72,000 laws on the books, folks. If I break one law and obey all the others, I'm a criminal? You mean I should quit pot and cheat on my wife because the latter is LEGAL?That's the sad state of affairs today. Sorry I couldn't offer you a little more "christmas cheer," the fact that I believe in God doesn't seem to translate into this being a happy time.
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on December 26, 2006 at 14:32:21 PT
I think I must come from some odd place on this earth and never will understand people's motives. I was taught to follow my heart and money shouldn't be the reason for deciding what I should do in my life. That allowed me the liberty to put what was important to me into action. I'm sure that was one of the reason I avoided anything political all these years. I don't believe in politics as a profession because it isn't solid it's just plastic. Power twists people's minds. 
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on December 26, 2006 at 14:21:02 PT
Happy Boxing Day! What in the world is that? LOL!I hope your virus clean up works for you and have a good night at work.
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Comment #7 posted by museman on December 26, 2006 at 13:44:27 PT
Motivations are at the root of behavior. Why so few people in this country actually question the motives of their 'elected representatives' is beyond my abilty to fathom, most specially when those claim to be upholding all the high and mighty ideals of 'democracy' and 'freedom.' There is no democracy, and the only freedom that exists is directly relative, constrained, and dependant on ones bank account. There is no 'representation' of anything except the money, and the power that flaunts it.The first time I looked into a politicians' eyes, what I saw there was pretty scary, and that was about 30 years ago. I have looked into several pretenders eyes since, and behind those eyes...behind those eyes are demons and monsters. And the things that they have done are monstrous and horrifying... we see the results every waking moment, but for some reason most people just can't seem to put two and two together.The values that have been accepted and embraced, that are upheld and enforced through fear, force, and destructive violence, those values are at the root of error. That is the foundation of our society, and they need to be modified extensively at the very least. Personally I see no need in the world for such continued error, and believe that we need to quit our addiction to materialistic power values cold turkey...but it ain't gonna happen soon enough to head off great disater and catastrophe, as nature is beginning to demonstrate.
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Comment #6 posted by afterburner on December 26, 2006 at 13:27:59 PT
Happy Boxing Day every one.This waste is getting harder and harder for the Feds to hide.I just did a major virus cleanup. Knock on wood.Must run to work soon. Enjoy your day.
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on December 26, 2006 at 13:05:24 PT
When a person picks a profession it says a lot about what their values are. When a person believes in politics and wants to get involved in politics I just don't understand why. It is strange how people pushing politics are so different then a farmer or many other important professions. I don't believe people that get involved in politics just because they don't seem to standup like they should. I don't like strings attached to my life. They take away from who I am.
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Comment #4 posted by museman on December 26, 2006 at 12:49:19 PT
wild and free
Just like every other 'war' our government gets involved in or creates.One year the government puts a Saddam, a Kadafi, a Noriega, or a Bin Laden, -to name a few- in charge of a country or a reagion.The next year those same puppets are targets for the current 'war.'One year incredible motions and laws are passed to ensure that every farmer in America grows at least one acre of hemp.The next year, to do such a thing is considered a crime of the greatest import.The government supplied ther seeds, and gave incentives to farmers to grow the hemp. "Hemp For Victory" is a rather famous movie made by the feds to get people to grow hemp, and they were all over the midwest, thousands of little acre plots, or 'vicory gardens' as the feds liked to call them.When that war was over, the gov promptly stopped paying farmers to grow, and began the long stale battle to convince the rest of the world of the 'evils of marijuana', including hemp.Farmers just let the fields go, and wind and weather did the rest.Now the DEA 'eradicates' thousands of the wild hemp that they themselves provided Americans to grow, not a century ago.Until recently they have claimed those numbers right along with the few actual grows that were found over the years- making it statisticly seem like more than it actually was. That is their idea that they could get more funding by demonstrating how 'bad a problem' it was.Now however they have taken a new tactic;Hiring illegal mexicans to grow huge gardens that they can bust, and sell.Those mexicans are only making about $10 an hour, but in case no none noticed, not one of them was arrested.The inferior flash-dried pot made its way into the market however, and for about a month after they 'busted' the patches, nothing but this crap was available.Criminals all, our government. Criminality is the NATURE of our government. The only time that they go after other criminals, is when those criminals are getting away without appropriate tribute. Enron, Worldcom, etc.When they get up in the morning, it's a crime against the universe that they lived through the night.Political aspiration is nothing more than LUST FOR POWER. All politicians wear invisible robes, and they are all actually naked, if one but looks, and sees for themselves.
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Comment #3 posted by PainWithNoInsurance on December 26, 2006 at 11:58:02 PT
This is truely a waste of time and money
If you did a search for hemp made products last year at this time you'd have found quite a bit of items. If you'd do the same search this year again you'd find a huge increase in products made from hemp and at some big store chains like Target(nice rugs),, and etc..I am a big fan of hemp made shoes and I can say for certain that in one year the selection of hemp made shoe has increased many times over. Hemp shoes do not harbor bacteria (have odor) when gotten wet like other shoe do. Ipath makes a great selection of hemp made shoes. I have the Ipath 1985 Skateboard style shoe, and they have this cool hidden compartment for some weed or whatever. I also have a nice pair of Addias hemp skateboard style shoes that are very comfortable.Why this government votes against hemp is beyond me, but I do know they are voting against a winner.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on December 26, 2006 at 11:27:44 PT
That's the truth.
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Comment #1 posted by Truth on December 26, 2006 at 11:20:54 PT
Man vs. Mother Nature
No matter how long the war, cannabis will thrive.The war....what a waste.
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