Hemp oil‘s growing popularity is a factor in the spread of hemp farming from state to state.
Wisconsin made itself the most recent state to allow farmers to grow industrial hemp. The legislature there voted unanimously in favor of the crop and Gov. Scott Walker signed the bill.
Wisconsin Ag Connection reports:
The legislation specifics that anyone with a prior drug conviction would not be eligible to grow hemp. In addition, the crop would not be allowed to contain more than 0.3 percent THC, an active ingredient in marijuana.
Rural lawmakers and farm groups have been pushing the concept of hemp production in recent years, claiming it provides an economic benefit for farmers, while creating new manufacturing and tech opportunities for the state.
“The establishment of an industrial hemp pilot program will open new market opportunities for our state’s farmers and create jobs in processing and marketing,” said Wisconsin Farm Bureau President Jim Holte. “From the 1930s to 1957, Wisconsin dominated hemp production. As a farmer myself, I am excited about the opportunities this creates to capitalize on existing markets, capture emerging markets and once again establish our position as an industry leader.”
Wisconsin becomes the 34th state to legalize industrial hemp. And with all that expansion, production of industrial hemp has soared. But if Wisconsin hopes to lead the nation, it has a long way to go to catch up to California.
Vail Daily reports:
Advocacy group Vote Hemp’s 2017 Hemp Crop Report says hemp cultivation more than doubled this year, from 9,770 acres in nationwide in 2016, to 23,346 acres this year.
Colorado’s hemp acreage is up from 5,921 in 2016 to 9,000 this year.