More States Want Government's OK To Grow Hemp
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More States Want Government's OK To Grow Hemp
Posted by CN Staff on November 02, 2011 at 08:55:13 PT
By Tim Johnson and Adam Silverman, USA Today
Source: USA Today
USA -- It hasn't gotten the attention of medical marijuana, but a growing number of states have passed laws authorizing the growth of hemp and are attempting to get the federal government to make it legal nationwide.Hemp can be cultivated for fiber or oilseed, and it is used to make thousands of products worldwide including clothing and auto parts. From 1999 through last year, 17 states have enacted measures that would either permit controlled cultivation or authorize research of industrial hemp, according to the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).
Colorado was the most recent to authorize research in 2010. Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont and West Virginia have passed laws authorizing cultivation, according to NORML. Hemp and marijuana are different varieties of the same species of plant, Cannabis Sativa. Industrial hemp has lower THC content, the primary psychoactive component of marijuana. The federal government classifies all cannabis plants as marijuana and places strict controls on the cultivation of hemp. Industrial hemp was an American staple in colonial times. The output peaked during World War II.Advocates say American farmers are being shut out of a lucrative market. More than 30 countries grow hemp as an agricultural commodity, and hemp-planted fields in Canada  which legalized cultivation in 1998  increased to 26,815 acres in 2010, according to "Industrial Hemp Production in Canada," a report issued by Alberta's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. Opponents say the arguments in favor of hemp-growing represent little more than a smokescreen for legalizing marijuana and other illegal drugs.? Snipped   Complete Article: USA Today (US) Author: Tim Johnson and Adam Silverman, USA TodayPublished: November 2, 2011Copyright: 2011 USA Today, a division of Gannett Co. Inc.Contact: editor usatoday.comWebsite:  Hemp Archives 
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